Biden campaign returns to blue-collar roots in battleground Pennsylvania

Scranton, Pennsylvania - On Tuesday, Joe Biden's presidential reelection campaign is taking him right back to the start with a hometown visit to Scranton, Pennsylvania.

On Tuesday, Joe Biden's presidential reelection campaign is taking him right back to the start with a hometown visit to Scranton, Pennsylvania.
On Tuesday, Joe Biden's presidential reelection campaign is taking him right back to the start with a hometown visit to Scranton, Pennsylvania.  © Collage: CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP & MANDEL NGAN / AFP

Joe Biden loves nothing more than peppering speeches with references to his blue-collar roots in Scranton – and now he's homeward-bound!

The 81-year-old president will reach out to working-class and middle-class voters with an address in the former mining town, calling on the rich to pay higher taxes.

More pointedly, the Democrat will draw a stark contrast with his Republican election rival Donald Trump, the real estate tycoon who will be stuck in court on Tuesday as the first former president to face a criminal trial.

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Biden's campaign launched a down-home social media ad ahead of his visit, in which the president's cousin says he loves Scranton because it was "the beginning" and represents a "set of values."

It also features a number of Scranton locals calling Trump rich and selfish.

"Growing up in Scranton, this community taught me the values of family, honesty, hard work, and fighting for the little guy. I’ve never forgotten them," Biden said on X as the ad launched.

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A pedestrian walks past the house where President Joe Biden grew up until he was ten years old in Scranton, Pennsylvania on Monday.
A pedestrian walks past the house where President Joe Biden grew up until he was ten years old in Scranton, Pennsylvania on Monday.  © CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP

Biden's homecoming trip also rides recent momentum in polls that show him catching up with Trump after months of trailing the Republican.

His campaign is keen to keep pushing the advantage, backed by recent fundraising in which he far outstripped his rival.

And it's in battleground states like Pennsylvania, which Biden took from Trump in 2020, where November's election will be won and lost.

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Scranton kicks off a three-day swing through the state for Biden ending in Philadelphia on Thursday, which will draw constant contrasts with Trump.

His Scranton speech "will drive home a simple question: Do you think the tax code should work for rich people or for the middle class?" Biden's campaign said in a statement.

"The president has made it clear what he thinks the answer is, and so has Donald Trump."

Biden himself released his tax returns on Monday for Tax Day, the deadline for most Americans to file their tax returns,

The Biden campaign also slammed Trump, who broke presidential precedent by refusing to reveal his personal finances while in office.

Cover photo: Collage: CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP & MANDEL NGAN / AFP

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