HomePoliticsCan Trump bring Minnesota into play?: From the politics desk

Can Trump bring Minnesota into play?: From the politics desk

Welcome to the online version of From the Political Bureauan evening newsletter featuring the latest reporting and analysis from the NBC News Politics team from the campaign trail, the White House and Capitol Hill.

In today’s edition, senior national political reporters Natasha Korecki and Jonathan Allen explore whether Minnesota could become a real battleground state this year. Plus, “Meet the Press” moderator Kristen Welker explains how Joe Biden is expanding his reach to Black voters.

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Can Trump bring Minnesota into play?

By Natasha Korecki and Jonathan Allen

No state screams “blue wall” louder than Minnesota.

There hasn’t been a Republican since Richard Nixon in 1972. Democrats say former president Donald Trump doesn’t stand a chance there.

And yet chairman Joe Biden‘s campaign is ousting top-tier local Democratic surrogates – governor. Tim Walz and Senator Tina Smith – to counter Trump’s appearance at the Lincoln Reagan Dinner, hosted by the Republican Party of Minnesota, on Friday evening. First lady Jill Biden also campaigned in the state last month.

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All the attention suggests both campaigns see Minnesota as an emerging battleground in a race likely to be decided in a relative handful of states. Democrats readily admit that a Trump victory there would spell disaster for them nationwide. But those in the party who know the state best say it’s an exaggeration that Trump would flip the state in the fall.

Walz noted in an interview that Biden was closer to winning Texas in 2020 (5.6-point margin) than Trump was to winning Minnesota (7.1-point margin). That was after Trump famously said he would “never come back” to the state if he lost.

Still, Trump’s loss in Minnesota by less than 2 points in 2016 has made it an attractive target for the Republican party. At a May 4 event in Palm Beach, Florida, top Trump advisers told donors that a six-way trial in Minnesota — including four independent candidates — had Trump and Biden tied at 40%, with Robert F. Kennedy Jr. was at 9. %.

In an electoral battleground where few states are really in play, both campaigns are looking for opportunities to win — or at least make strong enough headlines to make the opposition spend precious money on defense. Even with that in mind, Trump campaign officials are persistent and consistent in their optimism about Minnesota. Senior advisor Chris LaCivita called the state “a real opportunity” in a recent interview.

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But the Biden campaign notes that it already has staff and organization in Minnesota, while Trump has had virtually no presence there this cycle.

“What we’re doing in Minnesota and Virginia is essentially … not taking any state or vote for granted,” Dan Kanninen, director of battleground states for the Biden campaign, said during a recent briefing for reporters.

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Biden is expanding his reach to Black voters as polls show a drop in support

By Kristen Welker

President Joe Biden is turning his attention to defending his record with an unraveling bloc of supporters he can’t afford to lose: Black voters.

Yesterday he met in person with the plaintiffs in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision. Today he spoke at a commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Brown ruling at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC. He and Vice President Kamala Harris also held a closed-door meeting with the leaders of the Divine Nine. the group of historically black sororities and fraternities.

Tomorrow, he will hold an event with Black voters in Georgia ahead of his speech on Sunday at the historically Black Morehouse College. Later Sunday, he will travel to battleground Michigan to visit a Black-owned small business in Detroit and deliver remarks at an NAACP dinner.

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The Biden campaign released a memo outlining these efforts to reach Black voters and promising that “no voter will be taken for granted.”

Biden is losing support among black Americans. While 87% of Black voters supported him in 2020, exit polls show our latest national NBC News poll shows only 71% support him now.

Our poll also found that enthusiasm among Black voters is lower than among the electorate at large, with 59% of Black voters saying they have a strong interest in the 2024 election, compared to 64% of all voters. That’s also lower than where black voter enthusiasm has been at this point in the last four general elections.

In my own conversations, Democrats see these numbers as a flashing red light for the Biden campaign. They know the president cannot afford to lose this kind of support among black voters if he hopes to keep the White House.

Based on Biden’s schedule this week, it looks like they’re starting to see that too, with four straight days of events focused on Black voters and Black history.

We’ll talk about all this and more with Biden campaign surrogate Maryland Governor Wes Moore on this Sunday’s “Meet the Press.”

That’s all from The Politics Desk for now. If you have any feedback – like it or not – please email us at politicsnieuwsbrief@nbcuni.com

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This article was originally published on NBCNews.com

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