Some recent polling suggests that President Trump may have a slight edge over Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in the suburbs where his law-and-order message amid nationwide protests is resonating among voters ahead of the November election, according to a report.
More than a dozen Democratic Party officials and strategists in the nation’s suburbs have expressed an uneasiness with which the Trump campaign has switched its focus from the coronavirus to lingering unrest in major cities.
Trump has seized on images of violent protests in Portland and Minneapolis that broke out after the deaths of George Floyd and Jacob Blake. Trump has insinuated that these areas of unrest will leave the suburbs in ruins if Democrats are at the helm post-November.
Holly Lyon, chair of the local Democratic Party in Pinal County, Ariz., told Politico: “There is that little sort of unsettled feeling in people because we can tell that [Trump’s messaging] is grabbing hold, and it’s working.”
The concern is prevalent in other suburban areas. Two Democratic strategists who conducted focus groups of suburban voters said white, college-educated women “are starting to really get sick of” the protests.
Another state poll conducted by Monmouth University showed Biden’s lead over Trump narrowing generally in Pennsylvania and falling in some of its suburbs.
Robert Tatterson, secretary of the Democratic Party in Wiscon’s Ozaukee County, outside Milwaukee, Trump “will be able to be the strong man, only-I-can-save-you leader, and that’s playing out just like I had feared.”
Yet some Republican strategists have expressed concern that Trump could be overplaying his hand. Frank Luntz, a longtime Republican consultant and pollster, told Politico that Trump “is talking about the right issue, but he’s talking the wrong way. Suburban voters want ‘public safety’ even more than law and order. They want ‘safe streets’ rather than ‘dominating the streets.’ His rhetoric is over-caffeinated.”
Still, it remains difficult to gauge the country’s overall mood 56 days away from the election. The coronavirus pandemic has closed party offices and limited door-to-door canvassing.