A Trump-Biden Split Screen on Climate


As Trump continues to deny climate science, Biden says such remarks fit a pattern: “We’re not safe in Donald Trump’s America.” It’s Tuesday, and this is your politics tip sheet. Sign up here to get On Politics in your inbox every weekday.

Joe Biden spoke yesterday outside the Delaware Museum of Natural History in Wilmington.


A New York Times/Siena College poll released over the weekend found Biden and Trump separated by just four percentage points in Nevada, a state that has voted Democratic in the past three presidential elections — but where Trump lost by only two points in 2016.

Biden garnered support from 46 percent of likely voters to Trump’s 42 percent, a difference that was within the poll’s margin of error. The survey offered plenty of indicators that the landscape there could be favorable to Trump this time around, particularly among the white residents who make up roughly three in five Nevada voters.

Trump held a rally on Sunday at a manufacturing plant in Henderson, Nev., defying a state order against indoor gatherings of more than 50 people, after the state’s Democratic governor turned down requests to hold the event at outdoor locations. It was the president’s first indoor rally since June.

But this week Trump’s campaign pulled all of its TV advertising in Nevada, investing instead in a range of other states — a reflection of its cash crunch.

The Biden campaign, meanwhile, is flush with money, and has bought ads in both the Las Vegas and Reno markets.

As Jennifer Medina reports in an article out today, Nevada’s Democratic machine has established a strong track record over the past dozen years, winning most statewide elections through hard-fought campaigns that have centered on door-knocking and face-to-face contact — particularly with Black and Hispanic voters.

But amid the pandemic, that kind of campaigning is harder to do, and Democrats have less than half the number of canvassers on the ground in Nevada than they did in September 2016. Some Democratic officials worry that Trump could flip the state red on the strength of white voters in rural areas.

Indeed, the Times/Siena poll showed that Trump’s message might be resonating with those voters in particular. The president led Biden by 11 points among white likely voters in Nevada, a better showing than with white voters in New Hampshire, Wisconsin and Minnesota — the three other swing states surveyed in that poll. By nearly two to one, white voters in Nevada said they considered addressing law and order to be a more pressing electoral issue than confronting the coronavirus crisis.

Another sign of danger for Biden: his vulnerability with Hispanic voters, who are crucial to any Democratic victory there. Biden won just 17 percent of Latino support in the Nevada caucuses, with 50 percent caucusing for Senator Bernie Sanders, according to entrance polls. Nationwide, recent polls have generally shown Biden lagging behind Clinton’s level of Hispanic support in 2016.


New York Times Events

Can young voters get excited about the election if they aren’t excited about the candidates? Which issues really motivate them?

Today at 6 p.m. Eastern, join our deputy politics editor Rachel Dry as we explore strategies for combating voter apathy with the comedian Ilana Glazer; Vic Barrett, a young climate activist; and Tara McGowan, the chief executive of Acronym, a progressive nonprofit. Then we’ll sit down with Rhiana Gunn-Wright, one of the policy minds behind the Green New Deal, and the Times climate reporter Lisa Friedman to discuss how climate change issues can become a powerful motivation to vote. You can R.S.V.P. here.

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