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Trump campaign to open centers to woo black voters

WASHINGTON (AP) — Flush with cash, President Donald Trump’s campaign is reaching out to black Americans as it tries to claw away support from the usually Democratic voting bloc ahead of November’s general election.

Trump’s campaign is announcing Wednesday that it is opening 15 “Black Voices for Trump Community Centers” in the coming weeks in major cities in battleground states.

The offices will offer a line of campaign swag, videos of prominent Trump surrogates like Diamond and Silk explaining their support for the president and pamphlets discussing the president’s record.

A spin on standard field offices, the centers will help spread the world about Trump’s efforts on criminal-justice reform and support for historically black colleges and universities. They will also call attention to the general state of the economy under Trump. Unemployment for black Americans has hit record lows in recent months.

The Republican campaign is faced with hurdles as it tries to curry favor with black voters. Approval of Trump among black Americans has been consistent at about 1 in 10 over the course of his presidency. A Pew Research Center analysis of people who participated in its polls and were confirmed to have voted showed Trump won just 6% of black voters in 2016.

But the campaign claims it is seeing an increase in support among black men in particular — and notes that even a small shift in the electorate could decide close races.

In Florida, the campaign is opening offices in Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando, Tallahassee and Tampa. In Ohio, Cleveland and Columbus will be represented. In Pennsylvania, offices will open in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, and in North Carolina they will open in Charlotte, Greensboro and Raleigh. Others will open in Milwaukee, Detroit and Atlanta.

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