President Donald Trump's campaign staff is scrambling to turn the focus on Democratic nominee Joe Biden after a disappointing turnout for what was supposed to be Trump's comeback rally this past weekend.
Campaign spokespeople like Mercedes Schlapp are repeating that Biden is operating his campaign "from his basement," while Trump is holding rallies. Few have acknowledged that Biden's public appearances and emphasis on virtual addresses is compliant with social distancing guidelines in the face of the pandemic that's left millions unemployed and hundreds of thousands of Americans dead.
Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh echoed the standard Biden Basement claims on CNN, but Brianna Keilar was quick to shut it down.
"We know that key Democrats who support him...They say that Joe Biden should stay in his basement. I mean, that's not the way Americans can get a look at a man who says he wants to be President. Americans deserve a full vetting."
After correcting Murtaugh that Biden has been holding public campaign events, Keiler said:
"I'm surprised you bring it up. Because there's really only one person who sought refuge in a basement recently."
The anchor was referring to recent reports that Trump—unsettled by police brutality protests outside the White House—took refuge in the underground presidential bunker.
"Listen, Joe Biden has been working out of his basement, campaigning from his basement for three months. That speech you mentioned in Philadelphia, he didn't take any questions from reporters. And that speech, it was about 2 o'clock in the afternoon that day and Joe Biden could barely function."
He continued to claim that Biden's Philadelphia speech—which was met with praise—was nothing to brag about. Murtaugh didn't address the reports of Trump taking refuge in the bunker.
People commended Keilar for holding Murtaugh accountable.
But Keilar is far from the only one to make the bunker to basement comparison.
Trump was reportedly enraged when news of his time in the bunker went public.