By JOHN VERHOVEK, ABC News
(WASHINGTON) — Former Vice President Joe Biden will campaign from Michigan on Wednesday, continuing an ongoing campaign blitz across the Midwest as the 2020 race enters its final eight weeks.
The Democratic presidential nominee is set to deliver remarks in Warren, Michigan, on his plans to juice the American manufacturing sector by encouraging the purchase of goods made in the United States and discouraging companies from offshoring and outsourcing jobs, a phenomenon Biden will say is a result of Trump’s “broken promises” to workers.
Part of that speech will include the unveiling of a new policy proposal aimed at incentivizing companies to produce goods in America through a 10% tax credit and discouraging them from outsourcing and offshoring American jobs by imposing a new 10% surtax on companies that ship those jobs overseas.
The trip comes as Biden attempts to chip away at what has been a consistent and rare bright spot for President Donald Trump in the polls: his handling of the economy. A recent poll from Quinnipiac University shows the two candidates tied when it comes to who voters trust more to handle the economy, a departure from voters’ views on who can best handle the coronavirus pandemic and racial inequality. On those issues, Biden is favored.
Wednesday’s visit marks the first time Biden steps foot in Michigan since officially becoming the Democratic Party’s nominee, and the fourth time in the last 10 days the former vice president has made stops in the Midwestern battleground states that comprised the much-heralded “Blue Wall” of states that fell to the GOP in 2016.
Both Biden and Trump made visits to Wisconsin last week, making drastically different stops in the city of Kenosha, which has been rocked by protests in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man, by a police officer. The two candidates have also zeroed in on the state of Pennsylvania in recent days, with Biden giving a speech in Pittsburgh last week and making a Labor Day stop in the central part of the state, while Trump held a rally in Latrobe, roughly 40 miles east of the Steel City.
But when Biden steps foot in Michigan Wednesday, his visit will be nothing like the last time he visited the critical battleground state in March, when he rallied in Detroit with his future running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris, just days before the COVID-19 pandemic halted in-person campaigning.
Five months later, Biden is set for another targeted, but socially distanced, campaign stop in Macomb County, an area just north of Detroit, rich with the kinds of voters that strayed from Democrats in 2016 and helped deliver Trump the White House.
Advisers to the former vice president made clear that while his campaign travel is likely to increase in pace in the coming days, the candidate will not be holding large events similar to those Trump has held in recent days, events they feel may threaten public health.
“You’ll never see the Vice President with a big large crowd without people with masks, because it’s just not safe and every expert in the country has said that,” Biden’s campaign manager Jennifer O’Malley Dillon told reporters last week.
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