President Trump on Friday morning spoke in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, honoring the passengers and crew members who died there 19 years ago after retaking a plane from terrorists and crashing it into a field there.
“The terrorists on Flight 93 had a fourth target in mind. It was called our nation’s Capitol,” Mr. Trump said. “The only thing that stood between the enemy and a deadly strike at the heart of American democracy was the courage and resolve of 40 men and women, the amazing passengers and crew of Flight 93.”
CBS News campaign reporter Zak Hudak noted Mr. Trump praised first responders and law enforcement officers and read from their stories about 9/11. He also touted the deaths of Qasem Soleimani and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, but did not mention the leader of the 9/11 attacks, Osama bin Laden, who was killed in a U.S. mission under President Obama. He also didn’t mention Joe Biden or his appearances Friday, and his campaign ran no ads about the former vice president on Facebook.
The Democratic presidential nominee left Delaware on Friday to mark the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, telling reporters that he was “not going to make any news today.” Biden said, “I’m not going to talk about anything other than 9/11. We took all of our advertising down. It’s a solemn day, and that’s how we’re going to keep it okay?”
Mr. Trump’s aides were quick to point out some of the Democrat’s spots continued to air Friday in battleground states and online, reports CBS News campaign reporter Alex Tin.
The former vice president met first with elected leaders at a morning ceremony on the former site of the World Trade Center, briefly crossing paths with Vice President Pence. Mr. Biden also returned to Pennsylvania, visiting the crash site of hijacked United Flight 93 near where President Trump had delivered remarks earlier Friday.
“I’ve been here on four occasions. And it just astounds me, when you think about it,” Biden told reporters at the Flight 93 memorial. “My mom used to say, ‘Joey bravery resides in every heart and someday it will be summoned. It will be summoned. The question is, will you respond?’ People responded,” Biden added.
The Democratic vice presidential nominee also took time to honor the 19th Memorial of the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Senator Kamala Harris was joined by her husband, Doug Emhoff, in Virginia for a 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony put on by the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department.
CBS News campaign reporter Tim Perry noted that the event was held at the Fairfax County Public Safety Headquarters. During her remarks, Harris recounted her memories of the attacks and she told the audience of reporters that she was at the gym in California when footage of the attacks began to surface. She said everyone there, all strangers, began to give each other hugs.
“As we tried to reconcile and understand what was happening, without any reflection, we as Americans — as our first reaction, without pause was to hug and hold each other,” Harris said, adding, “What our attackers failed to understand is that the darkness they hoped would envelop us on 9/11, instead summoned our most radiant and defined human instincts. The instinct to care for one another.”
Harris was introduced by fellow Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who is currently running for re-election. Speaking of Harris, who serves on the Senate Intelligence Community co-chaired by Warner, the Virginian Senator said, “She [Harris] understands the dangerous world that we live in and she also understands the absolutely critical role first responders and our military play in keeping our country safe.”
FROM THE CANDIDATES
New details are emerging about President Trump’s planned campaign trip this weekend to Nevada, where events were first scuttled this week over the state’s coronavirus caps on large gatherings, reports CBS News campaign reporter Alex Tin.
Nearly an hour south of his initially planned stop in Reno, the Minden Tahoe Airport notified pilots late Thursday that the airport would be shuttered Saturday by the Secret Service for a “VIP visit.” County airport officials declined comment on the event, deferring to the president’s campaign. Republicans in Nevada touted protests Thursday over the shuttered events, accusing the state’s Democratic governor of a “double standard.” Governor Steve Sisolak denied any direct involvement in thwarting the president’s rallies, citing “Nevada-specific White House recommendations” to curb large gatherings.
Arizona’s Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican, is appealing a federal court’s ruling late Thursday requiring the battleground state’s counties to grant extra time after Election Day for voters to correct unsigned ballots, reports CBS News campaign reporter Alex Tin.
Judge Douglas Rayes agreed with local and national Democrats who argued the deadline was unconstitutional, ruling it imposed “minimal but unjustifiable burdens on the right to vote.”
In 2018, officials rejected close to 2,500 Arizona ballots for missing signatures, a small share of the nearly eight in ten ballots that were cast by mail statewide. Republicans and President Trump’s campaign had sued to intervene as defendants, adding the case to a slew of court fights between the two parties over the upcoming election.
“Every Arizonan deserves the right to have their voice heard at the ballot box. This ruling is great news for our state and our democracy. We will never stop working to make sure that every Arizonan’s right to vote is protected,” Herschel Fink, executive director of Arizona’s Democratic Party, said in a statement.
IN THE HOUSE
The wildfire season in northern California and the Pacific Northwest has elevated the issue of climate change, and the nation’s preparedness for more extreme weather events.
Democratic socialist Shahid Buttar, who is running against Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi this November, has been pointing to the recent scenes of orange skies in San Francisco in his calls for a Green New Deal.
“San Francisco and the broader Bay Area is one of the epicenters of environmental consciousness,” he told CBS News political unit broadcast associate Aaron Navarro. “This week, it’s been particularly poignant… I mean, literally written in the sky the other day was the need for a long overdue dramatic change.”
Buttar has been running, in part, as a climate justice activist in California’s 12th District in a longshot campaign against the House Speaker. After not making it past the state’s 2018 jungle primary, he got 12.7% of the vote in this year’s primary and will be her first left-wing challenger in 30 years.
While the Green New Deal legislation has been pushed by progressives, and utilized by Republicans against Democrats, the act itself has stalled in House committees since February 2019. Buttar said the legislation’s federal job guarantee could enable climate resiliency projects, such as controlled burns to prevent massive wildfires.
“The Green New Deal enables projects that the market can’t achieve,” he said. “This is not a failure of expertise… it’s a failure of political will, a commitment to capitol before our communities.” Since the fires started, Buttar said he’s seen an uptick in volunteer signups for his campaign, and that it’s been a “billboard” for the need for climate action.
He’s faced with the task of trying to dethrone Pelosi, a mainstay Democratic figure and fundraising powerhouse with more than $6.47 million cash on hand. Buttar argues that any path to victory for him would have to be through “revealing the failures of the establishment,” particularly on the Green New Deal. “When Democrats are led by a figure who hamstrings the new committee on the climate crisis and derides the most visionary solution to our mounting global climate catastrophe as a ‘dream or whatever’… it suggests that Republicans are not the only ones at fault,” he said.
Kevin Van Ausdal, the Democratic candidate in Georgia’s 14th District, has dropped out of the race due to “personal and family reasons.” He was slated to face Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene, a known QAnon supporter who has made racist and islamophobic comments, for this reliably GOP seat in northwestern Georgia.
“While I am stepping down from being the face of this fight for the people of Northwest Georgia, we have to carry on. We cannot allow the extremism and divisiveness of Marjorie Taylor Greene to be unchallenged in November,” Van Ausdal said in a statement, adding that he will be leaving the state.
The state’s Democratic party is now waiting to hear from Georgia’s secretary of state on whether it can remove Van Ausdal’s name from the ballots and replace it with another Democrat.
“We thank Mr. Van Ausdal for his service and send him our condolences in this difficult time. We are calling on the secretary of state to disqualify him from the ballot and allow the DPG to name a replacement as soon as possible,” Georgia Democrats communications director Maggie Chambers said in a statement.