Biden campaign sends all-staff memo seeking to calm fears about his candidacy

Joe Biden’s campaign sent an all-staff memo on Wednesday morning that includes internal polling showing a still-tight race with Donald Trump, the latest effort by Biden’s advisers to calm staff after the president’s poor debate performance.

The memo, obtained by POLITICO, highlights internal battleground state tracking polls from before and after the debate, showing Biden dropping by half a percentage point during that period. Biden receives 43 percent of the vote to Trump’s 43 percent before the debate, and Biden registers at 42 percent by Tuesday. Trump improved his vote share by 0.2 percentage points by Tuesday, according to the memo.

The outreach sought to get ahead of an expected new poll from The New York Times/Siena College on Wednesday, “which is likely to show a slightly larger swing in the race,” the memo reads, signed by campaign chair Jen O’Malley Dillon and campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez. Neither the Times nor Siena College has publicly acknowledged a poll is forthcoming, but rumors of its results have been spreading through Democratic circles for the past 24 hours.

“We should all keep in mind that, just last week, the NYT themselves acknowledged that they are often a polling outlier,” the memo continued.

The memo and an all-staff call scheduled for midday on Wednesday signal another round of efforts to calm internal fears over the state of the race, after Biden’s poor performance triggered calls for him to step aside and set off a panic within the Democratic Party.

The campaign is clearly bracing for a wave of polling over the next two weeks, which has already started to trickle out. CBS News released a poll Wednesday morning that found Trump with a 3-point advantage across the battleground states and a 2-point edge nationally in a head-to-head matchup.

“We are going to see a few polls come out today and we want you all to hear from us on what we know internally and what we expect to come externally,” the memo reads. “Polls are a snapshot in time and we should all expect them to continue to fluctuate — it will take a few weeks, not a few days, to get a full picture of the race.”

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