Trump replaces campaign manager following dwindling poll numbers

Amy Dong

On July 15, Trump replaced his reelection campaign manager, Brad Parscale, with former deputy campaign manager Bill Stepien. The decision follows a dwindling standing in the national polls throughout spring.

“I am pleased to announce that Bill Stepien has been promoted to the role of Trump campaign manager,” Mr. Trump said in a statement. “Brad Parscale, who has been with me for a very long time and has led our tremendous digital and data strategies, will remain in that role, while being a senior adviser to the campaign. Both were heavily involved in our historic 2016 win, and I look forward to having a big and very important second win together.”

The sudden announcement comes amid Trump’s diminishing ratings on various public and private polls throughout the country. Recent polls released on Wednesday show Trump significantly lagging behind his opponent, Joseph Biden Jr., with Biden claiming almost a double-digit lead over Trump. 62 percent of respondents believed that President Trump has been “hurting rather than helping” efforts against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The onslaught of the pandemic, which has killed over 137,000 Americans and has plunged the nation into a period of economic recession, has posed significant challenges for Trump’s presidency. Trump has been condemned for his poor response to the pandemic and for his public comments towards coronavirus, which has drawn heavy criticism from a nation in need of reassurance and support.

In an attempt to revitalize his campaign and his standings in the polls, the Trump campaign had organized a rally in Tulsa to regain footing amidst his supporters. Parscale himself had played a large role in the organization of this event, boasting of over one million ticket requests and a predicted large attendance. However, the rally struggled to see the numbers that the attendance expectations had been suggesting, and overall failed to achieve its initial purpose in boosting poll scores.

Parscale had been Trump’s digital adviser since 2016, despite lacking a political background, and was named campaign manager for Trump’s 2020 run in February of 2018. As a campaign manager, Parscale was unusually visible within the campaign, and Trump himself had been previously seen criticizing Parscale over previous transgressions, often through harsh berations.

Parscale’s replacement, Bill Stepien, joined the campaign as the national field director in August 2016, who was recently elevated to deputy campaign manager in May from his previous role as a top advisor.

Yet, critics, including the Biden campaign believe that these changes are fruitless in comparison to the myriad of other problems that currently rock the administration. “Almost 140,000 Americans have lost their lives and millions more have lost their jobs because of Donald Trump’s failed leadership,” Andrew Bates, a campaign spokesman, said in a statement. “The Trump campaign’s game of musical chairs won’t fix this.”

Parscale will continue to stay with the Trump campaign as a senior advisor for data and digital operations.

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