Two of the most fervent Donald Trump supporters in Florida will soon have their faces on phone and computer screens across the country as part of an ad insinuating the President’s campaign is operating irresponsibly.
Sen. Joe Gruters and Rep. Anthony Sabatini are featured in Protect Our Care’s new digital ad, which questions whether Trump’s reelection operation can be trusted to safely canvass given the partisan divide on masks and other mitigation efforts.
The ad frames the campaign as is the least funny knock-knock joke ever, opening with a knock at the door. And then another, louder one.
“Who could that be? It’s the Trump campaign and they’re spreading more than just campaign pamphlets. President Trump and his supporters have mocked safety protocols like wearing masks and social distancing,” a narrator says.
“Now, they’re going door to door all across the country — to your community — in the middle of a pandemic that has already killed 160,000 Americans and spreads by person-to-person contact potentially exposing millions of Americans to coronavirus. Why? Because Trump is willing to endanger your family’s life for his own benefit”
Gruters, the chair of the Republican Party of Florida, and Sabatini, who has been crusading against local mask ordinances, are among the maskless canvassers featured in the ad. The two officials are pictured in a golf cart during a recent swing through The Villages to door-knock for the Trump campaign. Gruters shared the photo on Twitter Saturday.
.@AnthonySabatini is driving the @FloridaGOP today as we hit the Villages going door to door. He is a rock star with the base and the President @RealDonaldTrump loves him! @ChrisMZiegler pic.twitter.com/dPX4Ws0RdX
— Joe Gruters (@JoeGruters) August 8, 2020
Protect Our Care said the ad would air in Florida as well as several other battleground states where Republican Governors have refused to issue a statewide mask mandate, including Arizona, Georgia and Iowa. It will also run in Michigan, where armed protests against efforts to mitigate the virus erupted earlier this year.
The group said the ad is meant to warn viewers about who may be coming to their door as part of a potentially unsafe canvassing operation.
“There’s a safe way for political campaigns and other organizations to canvass during a global pandemic,” said Zac Petkanas, Director of Protect Our Care’s Coronavirus War Room. “However, voters should have no confidence that the President’s reelection campaign is taking any of the necessary precautions to prevent the spread of the virus after Trump spent months downplaying the danger, ignoring expert recommendations, mocking the need to wear face masks and flouting social distancing best practices.”
The ad is below.