The Note: Dismal polling stalls Trump's comeback efforts

Trump’s reactions to current crises have been uniquely Trumpian.

The TAKE with Rick Klein

New polling out Friday morning shows two-thirds of the public thinks he's failing on both. An ABC News/Ipsos poll shows 67% disapprove of Trump's handling of COVID-19 -- a new low over four months' worth of polling -- and an equal share disapprove of his handling of race relations.

Numbers like these have Republicans hoping for comeback strategies amid an increasingly dismal outlook for November. Trump hopes to pin another campaign restart on a rally Saturday in New Hampshire, along with still-emerging attempts to define former Vice President Joe Biden as an unacceptable alternative.

But Trump's choices are defining the race. His push to pressure states and now school districts to reopen is coming up against grim medical realities; his embrace of Confederate heritage is narrowing his potential base at a time of a reckoning around race; and his insistence on in-person campaigning and a convention next month seem off, if not outright dangerous.

It's fair to say that Trump's reactions to the crises have been uniquely Trumpian -- something that might be said by allies and political enemies alike. This president has previously confronted no shortage of discrepancies between the world as he wants it and the world as it actually is.

But this brutal stretch for the nation has taken a severe toll on the president's standing. Trump's bet on his own instincts is not paying off for him or for his party at the moment.

The RUNDOWN with MaryAlice Parks

"I think the convention is a challenging situation and a number of my colleagues have announced that they are not going to attend," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in Kentucky on Thursday when asked about the president's plans to hold the Republican National Convention in person in Jacksonville, Florida, later this summer.

"We'll have to wait and see how things look in late August to determine whether or not we can safely convene that many people," he added.

A group of Jacksonville residents and business owners filed a lawsuit this week aiming to block the RNC from moving forward with their convention in the city, citing the health risks of bringing thousands to the Vystar Arena in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The lawsuit alleges that the convention will be "a nuisance injurious to the health, welfare and property rights of the Plaintiffs ... and the health and welfare of the community of Jacksonville," according to Jacksonville ABC affiliate WJXX. In Duval County, which covers Jacksonville, there are currently more than 10,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.

National Republicans, in response to the lawsuit, outlined some of the precautions they are planning to take for the gathering and, according to a Republican involved in the planning, officials have already contracted with multiple outdoor venues in the immediate vicinity of the Vystar Arena and are in discussions about potential options for all of them.

Friday, the Wisconsin state GOP begins its in-person state convention, which could offer lessons -- or cautions -- for the national party.

The TIP with Justin Gomez

Trump returns to New Hampshire for a campaign rally on Saturday, but this time it will be held outdoors, a reversal from his June indoor rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that drew a lower-than-expected crowd, and according to the Tulsa City-County Health Department Director Dr., likely contributed to a rise in COVID-19 cases.

The rally will be held at the Portsmouth International Airport at Pease and the campaign said it will provide "ample access to hand sanitizer," and everyone will be given a face mask, but they aren't required to wear it. Masks were also handed out in Tulsa, but were not mandatory and most didn't wear them.

New Hampshire GOP Gov. Chris Sununu has defended the campaign for holding a rally amid a pandemic and isn't discouraging Granite State residents from attending. Though Sununu said he will "not be in the crowd of thousands of people" himself.


ABC News' "Start Here" podcast. Friday morning's episode features ABC News Legal analyst Kate Shaw and ABC News Senior Investigative reporter Aaron Katersky -- the two unpack the Supreme Court arguments around President Donald Trump's financial records and where the legal fight goes from here. ABC News' Steve Osunsami tells us what new audio recordings tell us about the Breonna Taylor case. And, ABC News Chief National correspondent Matt Gutman takes us inside Arizona as it becomes a national leader in COVID-19 cases.

FiveThirtyEight's Politics Podcast. The crew interviews Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and a leader in the United States' COVID-19 response. As you'll hear in the podcast, Fauci discusses how the U.S. is doing compared to other countries, how American partisanship has influenced our recovery efforts and how a COVID-19 vaccine might influence the future of vaccine acceptance in our country.


  • President Donald Trump travels to Miami on Friday, where he’ll visit U.S. Southern Command for a briefing on its Enhanced Counternarcotics Operations and delivers remarks at 1:40 p.m. ET. He’ll also make a stop in Doral at the Iglesia Doral Jesus Worship Center for a roundtable on "Supporting the People of Venezuela" at 2:15 p.m. ET.
  • The Biden for President campaign hosts a press call Friday with former Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke at 11 a.m. CT.
  • Wisconsin Women for Trump will host a bus tour Friday at 1:45 p.m. CT at Oudenhoven Farm in De Pere, Wisconsin.
  • Wisconsin Women for Trump will host a bus tour on Saturday at the Republican Party of Wisconsin State Convention.
  • Trump will host an outdoor Make America Great Again rally on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET at the Portsmouth International Airport in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
  • Louisiana will hold its presidential primary on Saturday.
  • Sunday on ABC's "This Week": The Powerhouse Roundtable discusses all the week's politics with former New Jersey Governor and ABC News Contributor Chris Christie, former Chicago Mayor and ABC News Contributor Rahm Emanuel, "The Bulwark" Political Columnist and CNN Contributor Amanda Carpenter and author of "The End of White Politics" and Sirius XM's Senior Director of Progressive Programming Zerlina Maxwell.

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  • Download the ABC News app and select "The Note" as an item of interest to receive the day's sharpest political analysis.

    The Note is a daily ABC News feature that highlights the key political moments of the day ahead. Please check back Monday for the latest.