- Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is relaunching a $US47 million digital campaign targeting military service members.
- The massive ad relaunch comes amid a bombshell report that said President Donald Trump privately referred to fallen US soldiers as “losers” and “suckers.”
- The ads will target voters living near military bases in five swing states: Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Arizona.
- The Biden campaign originally ran the ads, which feature Biden interacting with military service members, in January. Those ads represent just one facet of the $US47 million campaign.
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Joe Biden is relaunching an ad campaign targeting military service members, according to his campaign, following a bombshell report that said President Donald Trump privately referred to fallen US soldiers as “losers” and “suckers.”
The president made those comments in an attempt to explain the reason for his cancelled visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery outside Paris in 2018, according to the report, published in The Atlantic. This is the site where hundreds of American soldiers who died fighting during World War I lie.
“Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers,” Trump said of the trip, according to The Atlantic.
In a separate conversation also related to the trip, Trump referred to dead Marines as “suckers,” The Atlantic reported.
“If what is written in The Atlantic is true, it’s disgusting and affirms what most of us believe to be true: That Donald Trump is not fit to do the job of president and be commander in chief,” Biden said during a news conference last week.
The Democratic presidential nominee has taken his criticism further, relaunching a $US47 million ad campaign across various TV, digital, and radio platforms.
In January, Biden released an ad titled “Protect Our Troops,” featuring Biden interacting with military service members, including his late son Beau. This ad ran across several platforms over the weekend in five swing states: Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Arizona. That ad represents just one facet of the $US47 million campaign.
The relaunch effort will be an attempt to reach voters living near military bases in key battleground states.
In addition to the ad buy, Biden also tweeted out a video Friday bashing Trump for his comments.
Less than a minute long and entirely wordless, the video delivers a series of powerful images of burial sites where US soldiers lie. Each burial site was one that Trump declined to visit for ceremonies to honour those who died serving.
Images of the burial sites and of soldiers marching are overlaid in the video with the president’s remarks, as reported by The Atlantic.
Mr. President, if you don’t respect our troops, you can’t lead them. pic.twitter.com/hcX9hGgdm5
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) September 4, 2020
“If you don’t respect our troops, you cannot lead them,” the video ends.
When reached for comment, Biden spokesperson Rosemary Boeglin gave Business Insider the following statement: “Joe Biden understands the sacred duty of a Commander-in-Chief, and that in order to lead our troops, you must respect them.”
“As part of a military family, Joe Biden knows the sacrifices made by our troops and our military families across the country, and wants to send a message that he will never take this obligation lightly,” Boeglin’s statement continued.
Trump has vehemently denied the report from The Atlantic, characterising it as “fake news.”
“I would be willing to swear on anything that I never said that about our fallen heroes,” Trump said Thursday to reporters.
Biden, ahead by about 7 percentage points, maintains a lead over Trump so far, according to a national polling average from Real Clear Politics.
The White House did not immediately reply to a request for comment from Business Insider.
When reached for comment, Tim Murtaugh, the Trump campaign’s director of communications, refuted the allegations that the president had referred to fallen soldiers as “losers” and “suckers,” saying that multiple people like “Trump critic John Bolton, who was also there, said he never heard the President say the things alleged.”
“President Trump shows his reverence for the men and women of the military by rebuilding the military, increasing military pay, and improving healthcare for veterans by expanding choice, increasing quality, and bringing accountability to the VA system,” Murtaugh added in his statement.
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