Biden Releases New Ad Calling Trump 'Convicted Criminal'

U.S. President Joe Biden declines to comment after reporters question him about the criminal indictment of former President Donald Trump as Biden departs the White House on March 31, 2023 in Washington, DC. Credit - Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Joe Biden’s re-election campaign is hoping to leverage Donald Trump’s recent criminal conviction in a bid to sway voters, debuting a new television advertisement on Monday that calls the presumptive Republican presidential nominee “a convicted criminal who’s only out for himself.”

The ad, part of a $50 million investment that will air in battleground states in June, marks the Biden campaign’s first attempt using Trump’s legal woes in its advertising campaigns since the former President was convicted of falsifying business records to cover up an affair in his New York criminal trial last month.

“In the courtroom we see Donald Trump for who he is,” the ad’s narrator states as black-and-white photos of Trump in court appear on screen. “He’s been convicted of 34 felonies, found liable for sexual assault, and committed financial fraud.”

The ad concludes by casting the election as a stark choice “between a convicted criminal who’s only out for himself and a president who’s fighting for your family.” It’s a theme the Biden campaign is hoping to sear into the minds of voters ahead of the June 27 presidential debate, particularly as Biden’s approval ratings last week reached the lowest point in his presidency.

The ad marks a strategic shift for Biden, who had so far largely avoided direct attacks on Trump’s legal troubles. Biden’s campaign began engaging on the topic by holding a press conference outside Trump’s courtroom in the final days of the trial.

Read More: How Trump’s Life Will Change Now That He’s a Convicted Felon

Michael Tyler, communications director for the Biden campaign, described Trump in a statement on Monday as someone “who will do anything and harm anyone if it means more power and vengeance for Donald Trump.”

The ad rollout comes amidst a broader Democratic push to highlight Trump’s legal entanglements for voters, with some current and former members of Congress and state elected officials calling on Biden to capitalize on Trump’s conviction.

Trump campaign spokesperson Karoline Leavitt condemned the Biden campaign’s tactics as a political ploy. “Crooked Joe Biden and the Democrats have weaponized the justice system against President Trump,” Leavitt wrote on social media Monday. She dismissed the ad as part of an effort to interfere with the election process.

Political analysts suggest that the Biden campaign’s decision to highlight Trump’s legal issues reflects a calculated strategy to sway undecided voters. Recent polling indicates a tightening race. “It’s great to see the campaign leaning into ‘The Choice’... and fighting to make this critical month of June, when so many people are beginning to tune into the election, count,” longtime Democratic strategist Simon Rosenberg wrote on his blog in response to the ad.

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