Trump resumes campaign with Florida rally 10 days after COVID-19 disclosure

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U.S. President Donald Trump will try to put his fight against COVID-19 behind him when he returns to the election campaign on Monday, starting a three-week sprint until the November 3 election with a rally in Field State. Battle of Florida.The event at an airport in Sanford, Florida will be Trump’s first campaign rally since he revealed on October 2 that he had tested positive for COVID-19. Trump, who spent three nights in the hospital for treatment, said on Sunday he had fully recovered and was no longer contagious, but did not directly say whether he had tested negative for the coronavirus.

The Republican President, 74, is seeking to change the dynamics of a race that national opinion polls and some state polls show he is losing to Democratic challenger Joe Biden, 77.

For months, Trump had worked relentlessly to distract public attention from the virus and its handling of the pandemic, which has infected nearly 7.7 million people in the United States, killed more than 214,000 and put millions Unemployed.

His own illness shed light on his response to the coronavirus on the home stretch of the race.

In a sign of fresh optimism, Biden is heading to Ohio on Monday, a state Trump won by eight percentage points in 2016 and almost certainly has to wear again to win. This is Biden’s second campaign trip in as many weeks to Ohio, which was once considered out of reach but where polls now show a close race.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden addresses the media as he arrives at New Castle Airport in New Castle, Florida on Saturday. (Carolyn Kaster / The Associated Press)

Trump’s Florida rally and scheduled rallies in Pennsylvania on Tuesday, in Iowa on Wednesday and in North Carolina on Thursday will be closely watched to see if the president has reshaped his campaign approach since contracting the virus.

Critics criticize him for failing to encourage supporters at campaign events, and even White House staff, to wear protective masks and adhere to physical distancing guidelines. At least 11 close Trump associates have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Standing alone on a White House balcony on Saturday, a maskless Trump urged hundreds of largely black and Latino supporters to help out of the vote. Most in the crowd wore masks but ignored physical distancing guidelines.

Biden, who has said it is irresponsible for any candidate to organize events where attendees do not wear masks or engage in physical distancing, criticized the president’s approach.

“President Trump comes to Sanford today bringing nothing but reckless behavior, divisive rhetoric and a campaign of fear,” Biden, the former Democratic vice president, said in a statement.

Florida to win

Trump told Fox News in an interview on Sunday that he was feeling well and pointed to his doctor’s memo from Saturday saying he had taken a test showing he was no longer contagious.

“I passed the highest test, the highest standards and I’m in great shape,” Trump said Sunday morning futures.

Trump also said, without producing any evidence, that he was now immune, a claim that drew a flag from Twitter for breaking the social media platform’s rules on misleading COVID-19 information.

Scientific research has not been conclusive on how long people who have recovered from COVID-19 have antibodies and are protected from a second infection.

The most recent polls in Florida, where a Trump defeat would dramatically narrow his path to re-election, show Biden has a small lead. Trump won Florida over Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016 by just 1.2 percentage points, which propelled him to the White House.

During his visit to Ohio, Biden will deliver a speech in Toledo intended to undermine what polls show as Trump’s last greatest strength, the view of some voters that the former real estate entrepreneur is better at running the economy. .

Biden will also attend a voting event in Cincinnati, his campaign has announced.

Trump has withdrawn his Ohio ad in recent days, while Biden has increased his, another sign of the opportunity he and his fellow Democrats see in making more states competitive than they initially had. conceived.

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