- The Washington Times - Monday, October 19, 2020

CNN anchor Jake Tapper on Sunday ripped Joseph R. Biden’s campaigning efforts as “opposite of the word tireless.”

During an interview with Democratic Sen. Chris Coons, Mr. Tapper expressed incredulity that Mr. Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, had taken the day off Saturday less than three weeks before the election.

“President Trump visited two swing states yesterday,” the CNN host said. “He’s in a third today. I get you don’t like what he’s saying, but if the Biden campaign is so worried about complacency, where was Joe Biden yesterday? He had a whole day without any public events with less than three weeks to go.”

“Well, Jake, Joe Biden takes no votes for granted,” Mr. Coons responded. “As you know, both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have crisscrossed the country, campaigning in critical, decisive swing states.”

“Not the way that President Trump is campaigning,” Mr. Tapper shot back.

“President Trump is campaigning in an unsafe way that doesn’t follow the directions of public health experts,” Mr. Coons countered. “Joe Biden has continued to be engaged and effective in laying out a clear plan for how he’s going to get us out of this pandemic and the recession that President Trump’s bungled mishandling of the pandemic has made worse than it ever needed to be.”

Mr. Tapper had raised the question of Mr. Biden’s quiet schedule after the former vice president’s campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon recently warned in a memo to supporters that the race is closer than polling suggests and to not become “complacent.”

Mr. Coons agreed with Ms. Dillon’s comments that Mr. Trump could still win reelection but insisted that Mr. Biden’s campaign strategy is working.

Jake, Joe Biden has campaigned tirelessly, but he has campaigned safely,” the senator said. “And, as you saw, this past week, during the national town halls that both of them held, it is a sharp contrast between President Trump, who’s frenzied, who continues to lie just incessantly morning, noon and night, and President — excuse me — former Vice President Biden, who is laying out a clear and compelling plan. Polling is showing that it’s making a difference, particularly with suburban women. But I agree with you that we shouldn’t take anything for granted in these last few weeks, and it is still possible for President Trump to win reelection. That’s why I say, don’t focus on the national polls. Focus on getting out and voting.

Mr. Tapper responded, “I would just say that I think it’s pretty much the opposite of the word tireless to take a day off. But let’s move on.”

Mr. Tapper’s comments came just before CBS News reporter Ed O’Keefe reported that Mr. Biden, who campaigned in North Carolina on Sunday, would not be holding any public appearances until Thursday night’s final debate against Mr. Trump.

“This week is mostly about debate prep,” Mr. O’Keefe said Sunday morning. “He will not be seen again after today until Thursday night in Nashville at that next debate. So they are going to keep him focused on that. That’s a signal that they believe this is still a very big opportunity for them to provide one last big contrast with the president, and that they have to prepare him for potential attacks from the president.”

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