President Donald Trump looks set to talk up his achievements since his inauguration and pledge other accomplishments if he’s re-elected, as he accepts his party’s nomination on Thursday night and aims to sell voters on backing him in November over Democratic nominee Joe Biden.
Trump’s speech is slated to serve as the grand finale for the four-day, mostly virtual Republican Nation Convention, and it’s slated to be delivered from the White House grounds. His address on Thursday night will follow testimonials earlier in the week from a range of speakers, including Donald Trump Jr. and Nikki Haley on Monday, first lady Melania Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday, and Vice President Mike Pence, who is due to talk on Wednesday.
“It’s safe to say that he will be trumpeting his accomplishments over the first four years of the administration,” the Trump re-election campaign’s communications director, Tim Murtaugh, told reporters during a conference call Tuesday. “He will definitely talk about the economy — the greatness of the economy — before it was interrupted by the global pandemic.”
The longest economic expansion in American history ended earlier this year as nationwide lockdowns to contain the coronavirus pandemic hammered businesses and workers. The biggest unknown about the U.S. economy right now could be just how much the recent loss of federal aid will stunt a recovery that already has lost steam.
“He will probably talk about the unprecedented response — marshaling the private sector and government resources — to fight the coronavirus on behalf of the American people,” Murtaugh said. “And I think he will give a little bit of a look ahead of what he has in store as far as achieving more for Americans, if the American people vote to re-elect him to a second term.”
Meanwhile, the Biden campaign said in a statement Tuesday afternoon that the GOP convention’s speakers so far have revealed an “inability to make any affirmative case for Trump’s re-election after he’s made the United States the hardest-hit country by the pandemic in the entire world, and made divisive poison his calling card.”
In Biden’s speech last week at the Democratic convention, the former vice president cast himself as “an ally of the light, not the darkness,” as he pledged to rebuild the battered U.S. economy and tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
Trump already has spoken at the Republican National Convention, having made an in-person appearance on Monday during roll-call voting in Charlotte, N.C. In his remarks Monday, the president criticized Biden for not traveling to last week’s Democratic convention due to ongoing public-health concerns, and Trump continued his long-running attacks against mail-in ballots. The accomplishments that he might talk up on Thursday include the 2017 tax cuts, a new trade deal with Canada and Mexico, and a 2018 criminal-justice reform law.
In RealClearPolitics averages of polls as of Tuesday, Biden is leading Trump by 7.6 percentage points in nationwide surveys and by 4.2 points in key swing states that are likely to decide the November election.