Latrobe, Pa. – Former President Donald Trump is predicting the destruction of America on Tuesday if his fellow Republicans don’t deliver a huge electoral wave. Democrats, led by President Joe Biden and two other former presidents, are warning that abortion rights, Social Security and democracy are at risk.
Three of the six living presidents delivered grim closing messages Saturday in the battleground state of Pennsylvania entering the final weekend of the 2022 midterm elections, but their words echoed across the country as millions of Americans cast ballots to decide the balance of power in Washington and major state capitals. . Voting closes across America on Tuesday, but more than 39 million people have already cast their ballots.
On Sunday, Biden was set to campaign in suburban New York, while Trump headed to Florida.
“If you want to stop the destruction of our country and save the American dream, you have to vote Republican on Tuesday in a giant red wave,” Trump told thousands of supporters as he campaigned Saturday in western Pennsylvania, describing the United States. “A country in decline.”
Earlier in the day, Biden shared a stage in Philadelphia with former President Barack Obama, the former partners campaigning together for the first time since Biden took office. In neighboring New York, former President Bill Clinton, largely absent from national politics in recent years, was also defending his party.
“Sulking and moping is not an option,” Obama charged. “On Tuesday, let’s make sure our country doesn’t go back 50 years.”
Not everyone was on message as the weekend began.
Even before arriving in Pennsylvania, Biden was facing fresh political turmoil after upsetting some in his own party by promoting plans to shut down fossil fuel plants in favor of green energy. While he made the comments earlier in the day in California, the fossil fuel industry is a major employer in Pennsylvania.
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Sen. Joe Manchin, DW.Va., said the president should apologize to coal workers across the country. He called Biden’s comments “offensive and disgusting.”
Trump seized on Riff in western Pennsylvania, accusing Biden of “resuming the war on coal, your coal.”
The White House said Biden’s words were “twisted to suggest an unintended meaning; we regret that anyone was offended by these remarks” and that he was “commenting on the truth of economics and technology.”
Democrats are deeply concerned about their narrow majorities in the House and Senate as voters sour on Biden’s leadership amid rising inflation, crime concerns and widespread pessimism about the country’s direction. History suggests that Democrats, as the party in power, will suffer significant losses in the midterms.
Trump took a peek at Florida while campaigning in Pennsylvania, slapping the state’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis. After displaying the latest presidential poll numbers on the big screen, Trump called DeSantis, a potential 2024 GOP challenger, “Ron Dissanctimonious.”
Trump’s weekend trips are part of a late blitz that will take him to Ohio. He hopes Tuesday’s strong GOP showing will build momentum for the 2024 race, which he expects to begin in the days or weeks after the elections are over.
On Saturday, Trump falsely said he lost the 2020 election because Democrats cheated while raising the possibility of election fraud in the coming week. In part, because of such rhetoric, federal intelligence agencies have warned of the possibility of political violence by far-right extremists in the near future.
“Everybody, I promise you, in the near future — in the very, very, very short term, you’re going to be happy,” Trump said of another White House bid. “But first we must win a historic victory for Republicans on November 8.”
Biden’s Pennsylvania address was similar to what he has been delivering for weeks — touting his grab bag of major legislative accomplishments while warning that abortion rights, voting rights, Social Security and Medicare are at risk if Republicans take control of Congress.
The president highlighted the inflation-reduction measure passed by the Democratic-led Congress in August, which includes several health care provisions popular with older adults and includes a $2,000 cap on out-of-pocket medical expenses and a $35 per prescription monthly cap on insulin. The new law requires companies that raise prices faster than overall inflation to pay a Medicare rebate.
But with a bigger and more energetic audience in his home state, Biden’s power seems to have lifted.
“We must reaffirm the values that have long defined us,” Biden said of threats to democracy. “We’re good people, I know that.”
He said: “Go out and vote!”
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