President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are both visiting one of the midterm elections’ most highly contested swing districts in Pennsylvania this week, battling for one of the nation’s biggest battleground states, according to Axios.
Biden is giving a prime-time speech in Philadelphia Thursday, calling his political opponents an “extremist threat” two days after lambasting his “MAGA Republican friends in Congress” during a speech in Wilkes-Barre, The Hill reported.
Trump is headlining his first midterm general election rally in the same town on Saturday, located in one of this year’s most highly contested districts in a major battleground state, Axios added.
“Whose side are you on? Look, you’re either on a side of a mob or the side of the police,” Biden shouted during his Wilkes-Barre speech. “To this day, the MAGA Republicans in Congress defend the mob that stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6. Defend them. You all saw it,” he said.
In the news: Florida Dem Candidate Running For Congress Potentially Violated Federal Law, Experts Say
Wilkes-Barre is located in Luzerne County, which former President Barack Obama won with 52% of the vote when he was reelected in 2012, but Trump won 57% of the vote there against Biden in 2020, marking one of the biggest swings of any major county since Obama. It is also located near Biden’s hometown, Scranton, a former Democratic stronghold that is increasingly turning red.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Biden is giving his prime-time speech Thursday “because democracy is at risk,” according to The Hill.
“When we talk about our democracy, when we talk about our freedoms, the way that he sees it is the MAGA Republicans are the most energized part of the Republican Party,” she told reporters. “This is an extreme threat to our democracy, to our freedom, to our rights. They just don’t respect the rule of law. You’ve heard that from the president. And they are pursuing an agenda that takes away people’s rights.”
Trump’s rally will highlight three of his endorsed GOP nominees, gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, Mehmet Oz for Senate and House candidate Jim Bognet, according to Axios. But Trump-endorsed candidates are struggling to gain support over their Democratic challengers.
Pennsylvania’s Senate race is a toss-up, the Cook Political Report shows. Emerson College’s latest polling shows Democratic candidate John Fetterman currently holds a 4-point lead over Oz, 48% to 44%, out of 1,034 likely voters surveyed with a margin of error of 3%.
2024 PRESIDENTIAL POLLING By Emerson
– (R) Donald Trump 53% (+14)
– (D) Joe Biden 39%
– (R) Donald Trump 47% (+5)
– (D) Joe Biden 42%
– (R) Donald Trump 51% (+5)
– (D) Joe Biden 46%
However, Emerson polling currently ranks Trump five percentage points ahead of Biden if they both become their party’s nominees for U.S. president in 2024.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Free Press.