President Joe Biden will cast former President Donald Trump as a threat to democracy Saturday in a speech set to be delivered on the third anniversary of the Jan. 6 insurrection, the Biden campaign said this week.
The speech is expected to be a key component of the campaign’s efforts to highlight the stakes of the presidential election, one that’s shaping up to be a rematch of the 2020 contest.
On a call with reporters announcing Saturday's event, campaign officials used dire terms in warning against a potential Trump victory.
Communications director Michael Tyler said that if Trump wins in November, he "will use all of his power to systematically dismantle and destroy our democracy."
Campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez added, "Our message is clear, and it is simple: We are running a campaign like the fate of our democracy depends on it. Because it does."
Biden will deliver his remarks in the Philadelphia area near Valley Forge, a historic Revolutionary War site where George Washington worked to rally troops into a unified army in the late 1770s.
"There, the president will make the case directly that democracy and freedom — two powerful ideas that united the 13 colonies and that generations throughout our nation's history have fought and died for a stone's throw from where he'll be Saturday — remains central to the fight we're in today," said Quentin Fulks, a deputy campaign manager.
Biden campaign officials also argued that Trump has grown more dangerous since the previous election.
"The threat Donald Trump posed in 2020 to American democracy has only grown more dire in the years since," Chavez Rodriguez said.
Trump himself plans to hold two campaign events Saturday, setting the stage for a split-screen moment.
Next week, Biden will deliver campaign remarks at Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, where nine people were killed in a mass shooting by an admitted white supremacist in 2015.
"Whether it is white supremacists descending on the historic American city of Charlottesville, the assault on our nation's capital on January 6 or a white supremacist murdering churchgoers at Mother Emanuel nearly nine years ago, America is worried about the rise in political violence and determined to stand against it," Fulks said.
Biden and Trump were neck and neck in a hypothetical matchup in the most recent NBC News poll. In the November survey, 44% of respondents picked Biden, while 46% picked Trump — a difference that's within the poll's margin of error. At the same time, Biden's approval rating dipped to 40%, the lowest of his presidency.