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Coronavirus scrambles Trump's chances in Florida

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published 3 weeks ago - Duration: 01:35s

Coronavirus scrambles Trump's chances in Florida

Trump's prospects for taking Florida has shifted since the coronavirus hit the U.S. A Republican source close to Trump' re-election campaign told Reuters, "Florida...is in play." This report produced by Jonah Green.

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Coronavirus scrambles Trump's chances in Florida

President Donald Trump had been considered the favorite to win Florida over the presumptive Democratic nominee, Joe Biden.

But two months into the biggest crisis of his presidency, the Republican has received mixed reviews for his response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Or, as a Republican source close to Trump' re-election campaign told Reuters: "Florida...is in play." One in five Floridians are 65 and older, the age group most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

And according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll from mid-April, only about a third of Americans 55 and older think the country is headed in the right direction.

That's down 6 percentage points from a similar poll in February.

Meanwhile Florida's Governor Ron DeSantis, a staunch Trump ally, has been criticized for being slow to close beaches and blamed for a faulty unemployment compensation system.

About one million of Florida's workforce lost jobs during the pandemic.

State government data as of Thursday shows that about half of them have not been able to claim benefits after its automated compensation system crashed.

Recent polls now show Biden neck-and neck or slightly ahead of Trump in Florida as well as nationally.

Trump's internal polling shows the same, a source tells Reuters.

Florida plans to partially reopen on Monday, despite concerns among public health experts including on Trump's team about the possibility of a spike in new cases should states ease social distancing measures too quickly.

That, the same campaign source told Reuters, "might not go over well, either."

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