One month out, battered Trump campaign faces big challenges

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By JONATHAN LEMIRE and STEVE PEOPLES Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s long-hidden tax returns leaked out. His first debate performance ignited a firestorm over white supremacy. He was hospitalized for COVID-19 after months of playing down the threat of a pandemic that has killed more than 200,000 Americans.

And that was just this past week.

Trump’s reelection team, battered on all sides, now enters the final month of the campaign grappling with deficits in the polls, a shortage of cash and a candidate who is at least temporarily sidelined.

The crises, many of Trump’s own making, have come so quickly that they are hard to keep straight.

Recordings revealed that he acknowledged minimizing the dangers of the coronavirus earlier this year. A blockbuster story raised questions over whether he privately belittled members of the military. And even the first lady was captured on tape expressing disdain for having to decorate the White House for Christmas.

“Are the political gods simply saying, ‘Your run is over’? That four years of chaos has caught up to you?” asked Michael Steele, former head of the Republican Party. He predicts the president’s coronavirus…



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