President Donald Trump’s campaign team has been developing a plan to portray White House hopeful Elizabeth Warren as dishonest and untrustworthy – based in part on her past claim of Native American ancestry – in a sign of recognition that she may become the Democratic nominee to face him in 2020.
For months, Trump’s campaign had focused its fire on Joe Biden, the early front-runner in the battle for the Democratic U.S. presidential nomination.
But Warren’s surge to the top of the Democratic pack in recent opinion polls and her strong fundraising – $9 million more than Biden in the third quarter alone – has not gone unnoticed, two people inside the Republican president’s re-election team told Reuters.
They said the campaign is evaluating the vulnerabilities of all the Democratic candidates and it was still too early to single out any of them as the likely nominee. But, one of the officials said, “Her rise is undeniable.”
The nascent game plan on how Trump would attack the liberal U.S. senator from Massachusetts differs from the manner in which his team had gone after Biden, seeking to portray the former vice president as corrupt based on allegations of wrongdoing – made without substantiation – arising from his son’s past role with a Ukrainian energy company.
The president’s team sees vulnerabilities for Warren among voters to the charge of being dishonest, based in part on internal campaign data, the members of Trump Victory – the name for his 2020 re-election campaign – told Reuters, asking not to be named while discussing internal deliberations.