With Senator Elizabeth Warren ascending to the top of the 2020 pack, President Donald Trump is apparently readying a revival of his racist attacks against the Massachusetts senator. During a rally in New Hampshire Thursday, Trump talked about how Warren is now “rising” in the Democratic field, lamenting that he may have launched his long-running racist “Pocahontas” attacks against her and her Native American heritage far too early in the race. “I did the Pocahontas thing. I hit her really hard, and it looked like she was down and out, but that was too long ago,” Trump said. “I should have waited. But don’t worry, we will revive it. It can be revived. It will be revived. And it can be revived very easily, and very quickly, and we’re gonna have some fun in the state of New Hampshire.”
Of course, Trump's “Pocahontas” barbs, which date back as far as 2014 , have never truly gone away. While the focus on Warren's tenuous Native American background has faded as her campaign has gained momentum, Trump referred to Warren as a “a very nervous and skinny version of Pocahontas” in a recent July tweet , and said in Pennsylvania just two days before the New Hampshire rally that he would “have to hit Pocahontas very hard” if she beats Joe Biden in the primary. Warren has decried the nickname as a “racial slur,” telling NBC News in November: “Donald Trump does this over and over thinking somehow he's going to shut me up with it. It hasn't worked in the past, it is not going to work in the future.” Trump's renewed emphasis on the nickname comes as his campaign ramps up its oppositional efforts against Warren, whose populist message has even earned praise from Tucker Carlson . Politico reported in June that the Trump campaign was “planning a barrage” against Warren, with lines of attack that include her policy positions and years as a professor alongside the Native American slurs the president so clearly favors.
Warren was not the only candidate the president mocked Thursday, though, as Trump complained about Biden—who he calls “Sleepy Joe“—and laughed about recent reports that the vice president's public appearances are being limited because of his gaffes. Trump also claimed that Sen. Kamala Harris is “falling” while former Rep. Beto O'Rourke , who's come out swinging against Trump in the wake of the El Paso shooting, is “like, gone.” “Whoever [the nominee] is, I don’t know that it matters,” Trump said. “Sleepy Joe may be able to limp across the finish line.”
As a Fox News poll released Thursday shows, however, it is true that whoever the nominee is may not matter—but not in the way that Trump wants. The poll shows all four Democratic frontrunners—Biden, Warren, Harris, and Sen. Bernie Sanders —comfortably beating Trump in a head-to-head matchup outside the margin of error. The poll was particularly good for Warren, whose support among Democratic primary voters came in second place to Biden. (Biden was preferred by 31% of respondents, as compared with Warren at 20%, Sanders at 10%, and Harris at 8%.) This also marked the first Fox News poll in which Warren beat Trump outside the margin of error, besting him with 46% of the vote to Trump's 39%, perhaps making a dent in the argument that she is not as “electable” as Biden in a general election. “Biden and Sanders have held sizable leads over Trump before,” Democratic pollster Chris Anderson , who conducted the Fox News Poll with Republican Daron Shaw , told Fox about the results. “But this is the first time our poll results give Warren and Harris the chance to stake a claim to an electability argument as well.”
Advertisement Trump's rally performance may have been a defensive stance against the poll's findings, as he knocked the increasingly-formidable Warren while also repeatedly trying to convince his supporters that they should believe such polls are “fake news.” “I saw some fake polls put out by the fake news media, and it said that I’m tied with three of the other Democratic candidates in New Hampshire. I don’t think so,” Trump said, likely referring to a recent Gravis Marketing poll that once again showed all major Democratic contenders beating Trump. The president later claimed during the rally that given how well the economy is going, American voters would seemingly be crazy to not vote again for Trump. “Whether you love me or hate me, you've got to vote for me,” Trump said. (Never mind the fact that with a recession potentially on the horizon , Trump has more recently tried to blame the Fed for the economy and claim he's not responsible.) And to the president, that line of logic obviously means that any polls not catering to his worldview—and instead, say, favoring Warren—must clearly be “fixed.” “Think of that, you have the best unemployment, you have the most successful state in the history of your state and in the history of our country, and then you’re gonna vote for somebody else?” Trump said. “Oh great. Let’s vote for Elizabeth ‘Pocahontas’ Warren. We have the best numbers we’ve ever had, let’s vote for somebody else. I don’t think that’s gonna happen, folks. … Only with fixed polls does that happen.”