Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will meet with members of Jacob Blake’s family during a visit to Kenosha, Wis., on Thursday. Protests in the area continue after police repeatedly shot and severely wounded Blake, a 29-year-old Black man.
Biden and his wife, Jill, will arrive in Kenosha just days after 2020 rival President Trump made a controversial visit to the city.
Trump, who visited the city against the wishes of Kenosha’s mayor, did not meet with Blake’s family when he was there on Tuesday. Trump visited businesses damaged by riots and held a roundtable largely focused on praising law enforcement, but did include Blake’s mother’s pastor.
The Biden campaign described Trump’s appearance as “self-centered divisiveness accompanied by zero solutions.”
“Trump failed once again to meet the moment, refusing to utter the words that Wisconsinites and Americans across the country needed to hear today from the president: a condemnation of violence of all kinds, no matter who commits it,” it said.
Biden is planning to hold a community meeting in Kenosha on Thursday “to bring together Americans to heal and address the challenges we face,” according to the campaign, and then the Bidens will “make a local stop.”
Wisconsin is an important battleground state, which Trump won by just more than 20,000 votes in 2016.
The Aug. 23 shooting of Blake rattled a country already faced with more critically examining American race relations and the way police have historically yielded power and used violence against its Black citizens.
Blake was shot multiple times in the back at close range in front of his young sons, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. He is still hospitalized.
During protests against that shooting, which had at times resulted in rioting and property damage, two people were shot and killed and a third wounded. Kyle Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old Illinois resident and pro-police counterprotester, faces homicide charges.