Republicans and Democrats have been appealing to older voters, especially those 65 and older, as polls show Democrat Joe Biden is gaining ground against President Donald Trump with this key voting group.The contest for seniors is likely to play out in battleground states with large populations of retired people, such as Florida and Arizona, says Thomas Volgy of the University of Arizona. Volgy, a political scientist, is a former Democratic mayor of Tucson, in a state that Trump won by just under four percent.One in five eligible voters in Arizona is a senior, according to state and federal statistics, and “even more importantly,” said Volgy, “people over 65 tend to turn out in larger numbers than any other group.”That gives them a disproportionate impact here and in other states, and both parties know this.  At a White House roundtable on seniors on June 15, Trump affirmed his “iron-clad commitment” to protecting the nation’s elders.  In late May, he announced a cap on insulin prices, citing seniors as a key group helped by the measure.A leading pro-Biden group called American Bridge has launched a $20 million, 10-week ad campaign aimed at seniors in states that Trump narrowly won four years ago: Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.Sorry, but your browser cannot support embedded video of this type, you can
Supporters of President Donald Trump cheer as he arrives on stage to speak to a campaign rally at the BOK Center, June 20, 2020, in Tulsa, Oklahoma.Polls show an average 10-point overall lead for Biden, who’s now at roughly 50 percent among all demographics in national polling.“When a challenger reaches the 50 percent point,” says analyst Volgy, “losing the election becomes very, very difficult for him. And from all accounts, it looks like Biden has now reached the 50 percent point.”Still, a lot could change in coming months, and the polls in 2016, which put Clinton in the lead, got the election wrong.Both campaigns have learned their lessons from that presidential vote and are now targeting seniors, a crucial demographic in the state-by-state contest that helped propel Trump to victory the last time.