The Republic Party will strategically use Melania Trump in the US presidential election in hopes that she reaches voters that Donald Trump will be unable to, according to Henry Zeffman. The Times’ Washington Correspondent joined Times Radio to speak about the second night of the Republican National Convention. The First Lady featured prominently as she gave a live speech from the White House.
Mr Zeffman said: “There’s an obvious hope among Republicans that she may be able somehow to connect with that crucial constituency of suburban American women voters.
“There’s plenty of evidence that that key group has been rather turning away from her husband.
“Women have favoured the Democratic Party in presidential elections for a few decades now.
“But the gap has really widened, not just in 2016 when Donald Trump was against Hillary Clinton, but in the mid-term elections in 2018.”
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He continued: “Even more women have moved over to the Democrats since Donald Trump became President.
“I assume as a result of the way he’s conducted himself in the White House.
“So that’s absolutely one reason that they let the First Lady give the headline speech on the second night of the convention.
“I suppose I’m a little bit sceptical about that strategy though.”
The correspondent added: “The idea that someone who came to the US to be a supermodel in New York and then married a billionaire and doesn’t really have a full-time job is quite the person to reach out to the suburban women who are probably defecting from the Republicans to the Democrats.
“But I can see that she is more likely to be able to accomplish that task than yet another white male senator railing against the Democratic Party’s plans for tax rises.”
Recently the President tweeted: “The ‘suburban housewife’ will be voting for me. They want safety & are thrilled that I ended the long running program where low income housing would invade their neighbourhood. Biden would reinstall it, in a bigger form, with Corey Booker in charge!”
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In a Marist poll in late June, 66 percent of women in suburbs and small cities said they disapproved of the job Mr Trump was doing as president.
Polls in June found Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden with significant support among suburban voters.
A CNN poll found Mr Biden with a 14-point lead over Trump, and a Fox News poll found him with an 11-point lead.
This is a major shift after exit polls in 2016 found the suburban-voter bloc was an important base for Mr Trump.
At the time 49 percent of people in a suburban area had chosen Mr Trump compared to 45 percent for Ms Clinton.