Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said he would take nothing for granted in the election, while President Trump rolled into Wisconsin for another large, outdoor rally in Waukesha Saturday night.
“UpFront” host Adrienne Pedersen asked Biden how confident he is about winning Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes.
“I never take anything for granted. I’ve worked really hard to try to earn the vote of the folks in Wisconsin. I’ve been there a number of times,” Biden said. “The polls show this a close race, but with (me) having a steady lead. I ask you to look me over and if you like what you see, help me out. And if not vote, for the other person.”
Biden knocked Trump for saying he doesn’t take responsibility in the pandemic.
“The federal government’s role is to have a national response to tackle this national pandemic. But Donald Trump failed and continued to fail to do that,” Biden said in the interview, which was done remotely from his home in Delaware.
Biden also said Wisconsin Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson “should be ashamed” of himself for claiming that Biden’s son Hunter and other family members profited off the Biden family name.
Pedersen asked Biden if there is any legitimacy to Johnson’s claims.
“None whatsoever. This is the same garbage Rudy Giuliani and his henchmen; it’s a last-ditch effort in his desperate campaign to smear me and my family. Even a man who served with him on that committee, a former nominee for the Republican Party, said there’s no basis to this. And the vast majority of the intelligence people say there’s no basis for this. Ron should be ashamed of himself,” Biden said.
As the president barnstormed battleground states over the weekend, a Trump spokesman said the campaign feels good about Wisconsin.
“We are confident that we can win it, but we are by no means complacent,” said Steve Cortes, Trump campaign senior adviser for strategy.
“We know that our win last time in Wisconsin shocked the world. We think we can win it again because we believe we have a very compelling case to make, particularly as it pertains to the economy. But we’re not taking anything for granted. We’ve been investing time and resources and travel into the Badger State for months, and really even years in terms of our ground game there. We’re going to continue to do that here in this final stretch. We know we need to earn the vote of every American, but particularly in battleground states that could decide this election, like Wisconsin,” Cortes said.
Pedersen asked Cortes about the safety of Trump holding large rallies during a pandemic.
“We believe that holding outdoor rallies is a safe and sensible way for the president to connect with the American people,” Cortes said, adding that rally attendees are temperature screened and given masks to wear.
“We believe in a measure of individual choice. We trust the American people to make smart decisions for themselves about their own risk profile,” Cortes said.
Also on the program, WisPolitics.com Editor JR Ross said the state Democratic Party has enough money this year to make some state legislative races competitive. WisPolitics.com is an editorial partner of “UPFRONT.”
“Dems have money to expand the playing field because they have been a fundraising machine. I never seen that kind of money before,” Ross said.
He said spending in one legislative race alone, the 24th Assembly District where Republican Rep. Dan Knodl of Germantown faces Democrat Emily Siegrist, has reached a million dollars combined on television, radio, digital and cable TV.
The outcome of some of these suburban races may depend on what happens at the top of the ticket, Ross said.
He said even the 8th Senate District race, a seat held by longtime Republican Sen. Alberta Darling of River Hills, is now competitive, and was considered a second-tier race just a couple of months ago. Darling’s Democratic challenger is small businessman Neal Plotkin of Glendale.
See more from the program here.