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The Marketing Imagination and the Political Imagination

According to the RealClearPolitics polling average, Joe Biden is about ten points ahead of Donald Trump. 

Moreover, the planned “reset” of Trump’s reelection campaign in Tulsa on June 20 was not a success, at least in terms of its expectations-game optics; the Trump fans were enthusiastic, but there were only 6,200 of them—a fraction of the number that the campaign itself had anticipated. Was the soft attendance the result of Democrat dirty tricks? Or of threatened mob violence? Perhaps there was some of that, but the plain fact is that the Trump campaign had trouble building a crowd in a state that Trump carried by by more 36 points four years ago. Other events, elsewhere in the last few days, we might note, have gone much better, expectations-game management-wise.

Meanwhile, in just three-and-a-half months, Americans will start voting, thanks to absentee voting and vote-by- mail. Thus the Trump campaign must necessarily enter a new and sharper phase, in which it runs more effectively against what it calls the “defined Joe Biden”—that is, Biden revealed as something other than “Middle Class Joe.” 

Yet if the Trump campaign is to succeed in “defining” Biden, as a menace, it

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