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Trump's muddled message isn't landing

August 1, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the White House, Thursday, July 30, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump's campaign made an admission when it abruptly went dark with its TV advertising this weekend: The President's message simply isn't working. His muddled message was on display in Florida as he downplayed coronavirus deaths and attacked Joe Biden.

The campaign's advertising pause, with ads slated to resume Monday, comes as Americans are recoiling from Trump's lack of leadership on the pandemic and there are fewer than 100 days to go before Election Day. At a time when the country is squarely focused on the threat posed by Covid-19 -- the US surpassed 4. 5 million cases on Friday -- Trump put his muddled message on full display during a trip to Florida.

And in another example of either denial or a desire to deliberately mislead the American people, Trump said Florida is "doing really well," even though the state now has the second highest number of coronavirus cases in all 50 states and reported record deaths for the fourth day on Friday.

On top of that attempt to define Biden, Trump and his advisers this week continued building their smokescreen that the November election will be tainted by voter fraud as a way to delegitimize results.

CNN's Ryan Nobles and Donald Judd reported Friday evening that the Trump campaign will resume ad spending on Monday after temporarily pulling the ads to allow Trump's new campaign manager Bill Stepien to review how much the campaign was spending and which voters they were targeting with their message, with an eye toward redirecting ad money toward voters who will cast ballots before Election Day. Trump's statements in Florida didn't seem to break new ground and it's unclear if they were meant to be a preview of a shift in messaging.

During Friday's White House briefing, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said the White House is focused on making sure "our election is not riddled with voting fraud and that the timetable is not hung up here. " But she refused to answer questions about why the administration isn't doing more to provide funding to states to pay for staff and resources to ensure the election is safe and secure.

And even many Republican state election officials have pushed back on Trump's inaccurate claim that voting by mail is somehow rigged.

During a Trump campaign call on Saturday, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said he is "not concerned" about mail-in voting in Florida.

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