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Tipsheet

Joe Biden to Campaign for Val Demings, Charlie Crist in Florida

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

As we get closer to the upcoming November midterms, now less than two months away, President Joe Biden has expanded his campaign stops to now include Florida. While there he'll campaign for Rep. Val Demings (D-FL), who is seeking higher office by running against Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) as well as Democrat Charlie Crist, who is running against Ron DeSantis, the state's Republican governor. 

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It was announced last Friday that the president will campaign in and attend a DNC event while in the Sunshine State on September 27. While some fellow Democrats have kept their distance from the president due to his particularly poor approval ratings, Rep. Demings and Crist have memorably sung the praises of Biden and made it clear they hope he'll campaign for them.

As Leah covered last month, the morning after he won the Democratic primary, Crist gushed to CNN that Biden's "been phenomenal. Gas prices are down, inflations is trending down, and democracy is trending up," going on to say, "he's a good man, he’s a great man, he’s a great president. I can’t wait for him to get down here. I need his help. I want his help. He’s the best I’ve ever met."

Crist recently resigned his role as a congressman for Florida's 13th Congressional District shortly after winning the Democratic gubernatorial primary. He had served as the state's governor from 2007-2011, but as a Republican. He ran in 2014 against then Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) as a Democrat, but lost that race. He had also lost the 2010 U.S. Senate race, during which he ran as an Independent. 

In a statement for Townhall, Elizabeth Gregory, a Rubio campaign spokesperson pointed out that "Democrat-controlled Washington is failing Florida: grocery prices had their highest spike in 43 years, gas is 25% more expensive than it was a year ago, and wages have fallen every month since Val Demings and Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion spending spree passed. Val votes for Biden's agenda 100% of the time and now Biden is coming to Florida because he wants Demings to be his 51st vote in the Senate so they can continue to fund their far-left priorities." 

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Shortly after winning her primary, Rep. Demings told CBS Miami's Jim DeFede it was "pretty cool" that Biden would want to campaign for her when he asked if she wanted the president there. In a particularly energized tone, she referenced being the daughter of a maid and a janitor when gushing about "to have an opportunity for the President of the United States to maybe want to come help me? Wow, that's--that's pretty cool." 

She went on to tell DeFede "if the president wants to come down and help me, the daughter of a maid and a janitor, he can come down and help me get my message to Floridians about whether you're in rural Florida or whether you're in Miami-Dade, you deserve to have representation."

The president has appeared at DNC events in some bright blue states, such as Maryland and Massachusetts, as well as in some key battleground states, including Wisconsin and Florida. 

Biden has made some particularly divisive remarks at these events about his political opponents. While at a DNC fundraiser in Rockville, Maryland, late last month he referred to Republicans and their philosophies as "semi-fascism." A week later, he would go on to demonize "MAGA Republicans" at an inherently political speech outside Independence Hall in Philadelphia. 

Florida has in recent years been regarded as an increasingly red state. Former President Donald Trump won the state in 2016 with 49 percent of the vote and then again in 2020 with 51.2 percent of the vote. 

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A majority of Floridians also disapprove of the job that Biden is doing. A Civiqs poll last updated on September 18 shows that 54 percent disapprove, while 39 percent approve. 

Forecasters give both Gov. DeSantis and Sen. Rubio an edge in this race. Decision Desk HQ, which sees the race as "Likely Republican," currently gives Rubio an 86.8 percent chance of winning. 

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