May 15, 2019

THE DEBATES WILL NEED TO RUN IN THE AFTERNOON:

Trump Can't Stop Attacking Biden. G.O.P. Strategists Wish He Would. (Jonathan Martin and Maggie Haberman, May 14, 2019, NY Times)

Mr. Trump's attacks on Mr. Biden have defied the pleadings of his own aides, who think almost any other candidate would be easier to defeat, and left Republicans puzzled while delighting Biden supporters.

"It just shows everybody that the vice president is the candidate Trump is most concerned about," said Representative Cedric Richmond of Louisiana, a Biden supporter, adding with evident relish: "He just can't help himself during executive time."

Matt Gorman, a veteran of past Republican presidential campaigns, said that Mr. Trump was simply handing Mr. Biden a gift.

"In a Democratic primary, attacks from President Trump are the best thing that can happen to you," Mr. Gorman said. "It elevates you, gives you a huge fund-raising boost and sucks the oxygen from your competitors."

The president's drumbeat of attacks on Mr. Biden have also gotten the attention of congressional Republicans, who would prefer a more easily caricatured boogeyman on top of the Democratic ticket next year. "Bernie Sanders is the perfect guy for us," said Chris LaCivita, a longtime Republican strategist. "He looks like the professor out of 'Back to the Future' and is a hard-core socialist."

Mr. Trump's offensive has also hastened calls by G.O.P. officials to bring together White House aides, Trump campaign officials and Capitol Hill Republicans in a gathering similar to one last year at Camp David, according to a senior Republican Senate official.

Posted by at May 15, 2019 12:02 AM

  

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