Play-Nice Approach Of 2020 Democrats Threatens To Hand Trump A Reelection Advantage

Democrats seeking their party's 2020 nomination have largely avoided bludgeoning each other with lines of attack that President Trump has already signaled he's ready to weaponize.

That's likely to change soon.

Whether overseas business activities of Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden or Elizabeth Warren's self-proclaimed Native American heritage, vulnerabilities of top-tier 2020 Democrats are likely to become targets, with the first primary contests less than 100 days away. Rivals of former Vice President Biden, 76, and Massachusetts Sen. Warren, 70, will start to draw sharper personal contrasts rather than sticking solely to policy.

The eventual nominee will face an onslaught of attacks from Republicans and President Trump in the general election. Trump has already started to attack Hunter Biden's involvement with Ukrainian energy company Burisma while he was leading U.S. foreign policy toward the country. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, 78, suffered a heart attack, prompting arguments that he is too old to serve in office. Trump's favorite nickname for Warren is "Pocahontas," a reference to her claim of Native American ancestry.

"If Warren thinks her Native American problem has been put to bed, she's got another thing coming,” said Ford O’Connell, a Republican strategist. “It is without a doubt going to resurface."

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Analysis & Political Strategy