Michael Bloomberg to spend $15 million to support Joe Biden in Ohio and Texas

Bloomberg, who spent $1.1 billion on his unsuccessful presidential campaign, has donated $107 million to federal candidates and committees this cycle
Last Updated 27 October 2020, 16:39 IST

Democratic nominee Joe Biden is getting a big last-minute boost in Texas and Ohio from a former rival. Youth turnout could approach 2008 levels, according to a new poll. And Biden said he has a shot at flipping Texas from President Donald Trump.

There are seven days until Election Day and 48 days until the Electoral College meets.

Bloomberg Spending $15 Million for Biden in Texas, Ohio

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is spending $15 million to support Biden’s efforts to flip Ohio and Texas, a spokesperson said Tuesday.

Bloomberg’s Independence USA PAC will run TV ads in both states starting Wednesday until Election Day on November 3.

“Mike looked at the polling data and it was clear that Texas and Ohio are in play for Biden. He is investing in expanding the map, beyond the ‘Blue Wall’ to places like Florida, Texas and Ohio, where it’s close but a win could make a big difference,” a different spokesman, Kevin Sheekey, said.

In Ohio, the ads will focus on the coronavirus, the economy and Biden’s recovery plans. In Texas, the ads will focus specifically on the coronavirus and will air in both English and Spanish. The spokesperson also said Bloomberg was increasing his spending on behalf of Biden in Florida.

Trump and Biden are essentially tied in Ohio and Florida, according to the RealClearPolitics average of polling, and Trump is leading Biden by 3.2 percentage points in Texas, a state that hasn’t voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1976.

Bloomberg, who spent $1.1 billion on his unsuccessful presidential campaign, has donated $107 million to federal candidates and committees this cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. He’s given $30 million to Independence USA PAC, his own super PAC, which has spent $32 million backing Biden.

Bloomberg is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.

Youth Voter Turnout Could Match 2008 Levels (10:08 am GMT)

Young voters are showing enthusiasm, as high as with the runup to the 2008 election, which saw a historic turnout as the country elected its first Black president, Barack Obama.

In a poll by the Harvard Institute of Politics released Monday, 63% of 18- to 29-year-olds said they will “definitely be voting” this year.

That’s much higher than the 47% of 18- to 29-year-olds who said the same in the institute’s 2016 poll and comparable to a poll in 2008 which found 63% of 18- to 24-year-olds said they would definitely vote.

If true, that’s a good sign for Biden as the poll showed that young likely voters backed Biden over Trump, 63% to 25%.

The poll of 2,026 18- to 29-year-olds was conducted Sept. 23-Oct. 11. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 percentage points.

Biden Says He May Have a Shot at Texas (9 am)

Biden said he thinks he may be the first Democratic presidential candidate to carry Texas since 1976.

In an interview with the NBC affiliate in Dallas-Fort Worth Monday night, Biden said the campaign has put a “major effort” into the Lone Star State.

“Eight days to go, and the Lone Star State has a shot of becoming blue again,” he said. “We have 17 battleground states across the country. We’re not losing focus on securing the many pathways to 270,” he said, referring to the number of Electoral College votes a candidate needs to win the presidency.

Texas demographics have been trending toward Democrats in recent years, but Republicans still dominate state politics. Trump currently has a 3.2 percentage point lead in the RealClearPolitics average of polls, below the nine-point margin of his win in 2016.

Biden running mate Kamala Harris will stop in Houston Friday, while the campaign is spending millions on ads in the state.

Trump Urges Mail-In Voters to Change Their Ballots (7:42 am GMT)

Trump erroneously told voters having second thoughts that they can change their votes in most states Tuesday.

Echoing an argument he made just days before the 2016 election, Trump said that Google searches for “can I change my vote” have been trending upwards, claiming that it was for him.

“The answer in most states is YES. Go do it. Most important Election of your life!” he tweeted.

Only a handful of states allow mail-in voters to change their ballots after submitting them and the practice is not common. Voters in Wisconsin have until Thursday to request that their ballot be spoiled and they be issued a new one, while voters in New York can simply show up on Election Day to have their mail-in ballot nullified.

Trump claimed that searches spiked after the second debate, while conservative media sites have claimed the searches are related to stories about Hunter Biden. But most of the recent surge has been driven by those stories, with related searches like “change my vote trending” and “top Google searches.”

Older Veterans Back Trump, Younger Veterans Like Biden (6:47 am GMT)

A slim majority of veterans say they will vote for Trump, but his support is concentrated among older veterans, according to a new poll.

In a survey by the Military Times and the Institute for Veterans and Military Families released Monday, 52% of people with some military experience backed Trump and 42% backed Biden.

That’s a drop for Trump, who got about 60% of voters with some military experience in 2016, according to exit polls.

Trump’s numbers were buoyed by strong support among veterans over 55, who backed him over Biden, 58%-39%.

By contrast, veterans under the age of 34 supported Biden over Trump, 46%-42%; and veterans age 34-54 backed Biden 51%-40%. Those two groups also showed higher numbers of respondents saying they’d vote for a third-party candidate.

The nationwide poll of 1,733 veterans was conducted Oct. 1-13.

Two Conservative-Leaning Papers Back Trump, While Another Balks

Trump picked up the endorsement of the conservative-leaning editorial boards at the New York Post and the Spokane Spokesman-Review in Washington state.

But he lost the Topeka Capital-Journal in Kansas, which supported him in 2016.

In an editorial announcing its decision, the Capital-Journal’s editorial board said that Biden is “committed to following the science and leading our country out of this pandemic.”

“Yes, you might have heard that he’s also a Democrat. He deserves your support anyway,” the paper wrote.

The Spokesman-Review, while endorsing Trump’s “market based solutions” and approach to trade, added that he is “a bully and a bigot,” who “panders to racists” and “tweets conspiracy theories” while handling the coronavirus poorly, denying climate change and seeking to dismantle the Affordable Care Act without an alternative.
Coming Up:

Trump will visit Lansing, Michigan; West Salem, Wisconsin; and Omaha, Nebraska on Tuesday. He’ll be in Bullhead City and Goodyear, Arizona on Wednesday.

Biden will be in Warm Springs and Atlanta, Georgia Tuesday and former President Barack Obama will be in Orlando, Florida.

(Published 27 October 2020, 16:39 IST)

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