US President Donald Trump on Tuesday told a Pennsylvania crowd that he is fighting “Marxists” and “lunatics,” while his Democratic challenger, former US vice president Joe Biden, accused him in Florida, another key electoral state, of having treated Americans as “expendable” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
With only days until the Nov. 3 election and badly down in the polls, Trump fired every lurid exaggeration about the Democrats and insult about Biden’s mental state that he has in his arsenal.
He said Biden was “choking like a dog” during their televised debate, called him mentally “shot,” and claimed the Democratic candidate was the pawn of communists.
“He is handing control to the socialists, and Marxists and left-wing extremists,” Trump told the crowd in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. “He can’t stand up to the lunatics running his party.”
“This will end up being a large-scale version of Venezuela if they get in,” he said, painting a nightmarish anti-immigrant vision of a nation where Democrats give free hospital care to “illegal aliens,” while “decimating Medicare and destroying your social security.”
Earlier, Biden was in Florida holding one of the much smaller events typical of his low-key campaign, zooming in on Trump’s handling of the pandemic.
Arguably even more important than Pennsylvania, Florida is a battleground state that Trump won in 2016, but where polls show Biden ahead.
Biden courted the elderly, telling an event at a retirement center in Pembroke Pines, north of Miami, that Trump has “never been focused on you.”
“His handling of this pandemic has been erratic, just like his presidency has been,” Biden said.
Biden recalled that Trump once remarked that the virus “infects virtually nobody.”
“You are expendable, you are forgettable, you are virtually nobody. That’s how he sees this,” said Biden, who, unlike Trump, wore a mask throughout his appearance.
A poll of Florida voters released on Tuesday by Florida Atlantic University (FAU) gave Biden a 51 percent to 47 percent lead.
“Joe Biden continues to be competing better for senior voters than Hillary [Rodham] Clinton did in 2016, and that could be the difference in Florida,” FAU political science professor Kevin Wagner said.
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