Joe Biden’s (D) campaign is forging tradition and does not have immediate plans to lease a campaign plane adorned with his logo due to coronavirus-related restrictions and concerns.
The Chinese coronavirus pandemic has rocked the election year, forcing both Democrats and Republicans to reinvent what should have been a chaotic year filled with constant campaign stops, packed arenas, as well as massive party conventions that will occur virtually. While President Trump appears to be scaling back, he has spoken to sizeable crowds in-person since the start of the pandemic. Biden is taking a different approach, residing primarily within the confines of his basement and attributing his decision to stay out of the public eye to the ongoing health crisis.
According to Axios, the Biden campaign has yet to book any air travel “and thus has no need to lease an aircraft with the Democratic nominee’s name and logo emblazoned on the side, a candidate tradition for decades, people familiar with the plans tell Axios.”
In 2016, Clinton traveled aboard a campaign plane reading “Stronger Together” while Trump stuck to his own plane, dubbed “Trump Force One.”
While there are no immediate plans for extensive air travel, Biden aides tell Axios that it is not completely off the table.
“Biden aides say he hasn’t completely ruled out flying between now and November — and that the campaign could change course if individual states change their guidelines,” the outlet reported.
The Trump campaign has continued to express concern about Biden’s refusal to maintain a presence outside of his home and is seeking assurances that he will not attempt to back out of the three, in-person presidential debates.
“We must insist on a commitment that the two candidates will definitely appear on stage, in person – whether in a television studio without an audience or elsewhere – and not through separate, online transmissions where Mr. Biden could rely on notes, teleprompter, or handlers,” Trump attorney Rudy Giulini wrote in an August 6 letter to the Commission on Presidential Debates.
“While we do understand that Mr. Biden has been sequestered in his basement in Wilmington, Delaware, for some time, President Trump still believes that the American people deserve to see the candidates for president side by side at some point,” he added in the letter, which identified “Basement” as Biden’s address:
The Trump campaign sent a letter to the Debate Commission to ensure that Joe Biden would appear Live on Stage to Debate.
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) August 7, 2020
Biden, who will not travel to Milwaukee to formally accept his nomination, is expected to deliver his big convention address virtually on Thursday.