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Biden Leads Trump With Americans Unhappy About State of Country

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Almost 90% of Americans say they are dissatisfied with the state of the country, and their unhappiness is affecting their political decisions four months before the presidential election, a new study from Pew Research Center shows.

Only 17% of Americans of any party say they are “proud” of the U.S. while 71% say they feel angry and 66% fearful. Just 12% of Americans say they are satisfied with the direction of the country, less than half of the 31% who said the same in a study in April; 87% now say they are dissatisfied.

The poll was conducted in mid-June as the number of coronavirus cases spiked in Sunbelt states and the recession deepened.

This unhappiness is affecting perceptions of President Donald Trump, who is 10 percentage points behind Democratic nominee Joe Biden. Some 54% of registered voters back Biden and 44% support Trump. The president’s approval rating dropped to 39%, while 59% of Americans disapproved. In the April survey, Trump’s approval was 44%.

The study was conducted June 16-22 and has a margin of error of 1.8 percentage points.

Still, a slim majority of Americans say Trump has a better handle on the economy than Biden. Amid a recession, Trump leads Biden by 3 points, 51% to 48%, among voters who said they are very or somewhat confident in the candidate’s ability to make good decisions about economic policy.

Biden, however, leads in every other category. Voters placed more confidence in his ability to handle law enforcement and criminal justice issues, foreign policy, the coronavirus outbreak, race relations and to bring the country closer together. Trump’s lowest mark is on bringing the country together — only 31% of voters express confidence in the president in that area.

The Pew survey’s results are similar to the findings of polls released in the past week that found Biden holding a double-digit lead over Trump. A New York Times/Siena College poll released Wednesday found Biden up 14 points over Trump nationally. A Fox News poll released days earlier found Biden leading by 12 points.

On personality traits, Biden is viewed by 60% of voters as even-tempered in the Pew survey; only a quarter of voters see Trump that way. Only 7% of voters believe Trump to be “very” even-tempered.

Biden is also viewed by more Americans as being a good role model, honest and as someone who cares about the needs of ordinary people. Trump is seen as more energetic and courageous, though the president only leads Biden by 1 percentage point when it comes to the perception of courage.

The Pew study finds men split in their support with 50% favoring Biden and 48% for Trump. Women favor Biden 57% to 41%. White Americans favor Trump 53% to 45% whereas nearly 90% of Black Americans back Biden. Two-thirds of Hispanics support Biden compared with 32% who back Trump. Voters living in battleground states favored Biden by 6 points, 52% to 46%.

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Biden to Criticize Trump For Golfing, Holding Rallies During Covid Crisis

Joe Biden is set to sharply criticize Donald Trump’s stewardship of the response to the coronavirus pandemic, saying the president is dismissing the threat of the virus as cases surge.

More than six months after the first reported Covid-19 case in the U.S., Biden on Tuesday will deliver a speech in Wilmington, Delaware, outlining what he will call a failed presidential response that has exacerbated a crisis other countries have managed to control.

Biden will assail Trump for holding crowded campaign events and playing golf. And the Democratic nominee will charge that the president called for slowing down testing for the virus because increased cases would hurt his political prospects, according to a preview of the speech released by the Biden campaign.

More than 125,000 Americans have died as a result of the pandemic and millions have lost their jobs as the economy shut down to stop the spread. In recent weeks, new hot spots have emerged as some states reopened their economies, particularly in the South and across the Sunbelt.

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Biden will outline steps the country should take to fight the virus and safely reopen the economy, his campaign added. The former vice president has previously called on all Americans to wear masks and said if he were president, he would make it compulsory.

Trump has refused to wear a mask and has not explicitly encouraged Americans to do so.

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Jeffrey And Marilyn Katzenberg Host Event For Joe Biden As Campaign Continues Fundraising Blitz

Joe Biden continues his fundraising blitz on Saturday morning with an event hosted by Jeffrey and Marilyn Katzenberg.

This is Quibi founder’s first fundraiser for Biden since he became the presumptive Democratic nominee, and the event is expected to bring in a long list of top Hollywood executives.

During the primary, Katzenberg spread his money around during the primary season, co-hosting events for multiple candidates. Katzenberg co-hosted the first big Hollywood fundraising event of Biden’s campaign in May of last year, as well as an event for his political action committee in October, 2018, before the former Vice President entered the race.

Katzenberg has been one of the Democratic party’s most prolific donors and bundlers, raising millions in recent cycles for Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama’s presidential race. He also gave seven figure sums to Priorities USA Action, a super PAC that backed Obama in 2012, Clinton in 2016 and Biden this year. Katzenberg gave $100,000 to the super PAC in February.

Even without the in-person fundraising and grip and grin photo lines, Biden has been able to raise huge sums via virtual events. A fundraiser with Barack Obama earlier this week raised $11 million, with $7.6 million coming from small-dollar donations.

The virtual events also have made it a bit easier to tap celebrities for fundraisers. John Legend, Barbra Streisand, Jay Leno, Jennifer Hudson and Andra Day appeared at an event for the campaign on June 11, raising about $2 million, according to a source.

Biden outraised Donald Trump in May, drawing $80.8 million to the president’s haul of $74 million. The money on both sides went to joint candidate-party committees, allowing them to raise six figure sums from individual donors.


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World News

Blackstone’s Tony James Hosts High-Dollar Fundraiser for Biden

Blackstone Group Inc. Executive Vice Chairman Tony James hosted a small, high-dollar fundraiser for Democratic nominee Joe Biden on Wednesday.

James and his wife Amabel led the virtual event with Biden, who’s been appearing nearly daily at fundraisers ahead of the end of the quarter next week. Biden has been seeking to balance his efforts to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for his campaign from wealthy donors with the policy concerns of progressives who hope to see him enact tough rules on Wall Street if elected.

“I know you’re not here to hear from me, but I do want to say I believe that Donald Trump is destroying the fabric of America. And I think we cannot allow him to have a second term,” James said in his introduction of Biden.

James is considered by other Wall Street donors as a potential candidate for top job in a Biden administration, and hosting a fundraising event is a way to help strengthen the ties between the candidate and the donor. James was considered for top posts in the Obama administration and reportedly turned down an offer to serve as commerce secretary as he held out for a more influential job.

Jonathan Gray, James’s successor as president of Blackstone, was a co-host of a Biden fundraiser in New York in mid-February, one of the darkest times for Biden’s campaign. James also raised money for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign and hosted a fundraiser last year for one of Biden’s opponents in the 2020 Democratic primary, Pete Buttigieg.

Biden struggled to raise money during much of the Democratic primary season but has begun attracting small and large donors since becoming the party’s nominee. He has raised money not just for his campaign operation but for the Democratic National Committee and state parties.

Fundraising surged in May, when Biden’s campaign, the Democratic National Committee and allied fundraising vehicles took in $80.8 million, a record for Biden’s campaign, which beat the $74 million that Trump and the Republican National Committee raised last month.

“It’s not about how bad Trump is, it’s really about how good Joe Biden would be,” James said at the fundraiser. Biden, he said, “is the one leader in America who can pull the nation together and start to heal us” and someone “who’s shown he gets things done in Washington” and can find “the middle ground.”

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World News

Biden Opens Up Largest Polling Lead of the Year Over Trump

Joe Biden leads President Donald Trump 50% to 36% in a new nationwide poll Wednesday, the latest alarm bell for the president’s campaign as the economy, coronavirus and Black Lives Matter protests continue to weigh on his re-election bid.

The 14-point difference in the New York Times/Siena College poll matches the largest margin Biden has seen this year, and it shows the presumptive Democratic nominee leading or making inroads among a broad cross-section of demographic groups.

Amid a campaign schedule curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic, the former vice president is ahead by 22 points among women, but also 3 points among men. He’s ahead or effectively tied in every age and ethnic group, and he leads by 21 points among independent voters.

QuickTake: Why a Gender Gap Lies Between Trump and a Second Term

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-2.​3% Global GDP Tracker (annualized), May

Trump’s only dependable lead comes from registered Republicans and from the one demographic group that gave him an advantage in industrial battleground states in 2016: white, non-college educated voters. He leads Biden among that cohort by 19 points.

Biden’s national polling lead at this point in the campaign cycle is larger than any enjoyed by Hillary Clinton in the last six months of the 2016 campaign. And Biden is leading in every public poll in June in key battleground states like Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — all states that Trump won in 2016, giving him an Electoral College victory despite losing the popular vote.

But national polls don’t always predict the outcome. Trump won some of those states by a fraction of a percentage point -- allowing him to pull off an upset victory despite trailing in national polls in the days before the election. If he outperforms Biden in those key states again, that could tilt the balance.

Trump’s 50% approval rating on economic issues continues to be a bright spot. Only 39% approve of his handling of criminal justice, 38% on the coronavirus, 33% on race relations and 29% on the nationwide protests after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last month.

Trump has responded to the protests by ordering federal troops to guard the White House and celebrating the “Great American Heritage” of statues and military bases commemorating Confederate generals. His attempt to reboot his campaign with a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma was met with sparse crowds and controversy when he said he ordered officials to slow coronavirus testing because it was showing increased infection numbers.

Biden, meanwhile, has been largely confined to the immediate vicinity of his Delaware home, conducting fundraisers and campaign events online. He has held a few small campaign events in Delaware and nearby Philadelphia. A Tuesday fundraiser with former President Barack Obama raised $11 million.

Biden’s 14-point advantage is the same lead registered in a CNN poll earlier this month that caused an angry Trump campaign to demand the cable channel retract its findings. The Times sample contained 26% Republicans, which is consistent with the findings of similar telephone polls; the Trump campaign says pollsters should assume the same 33% representation found in 2016 exit polls.

The addition of the New York Times poll pushed Biden’s lead in the FiveThirtyEight average of polls to over 10 percentage points for the first time.

The telephone survey of 1,337 registered voters was conducted from June 17 to 22 and has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.

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