Former Warren, Clinton aides leading 'coronavirus war room' targeting Trump's response to pandemic

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Former aides to high-ranking Democratic politicians are joining a so-called "coronavirus war room" in order to attack President Trump's response to the pandemic.

Protect Our Care -- a nonprofit tied to liberal dark money groups -- announced the war room on Thursday, with the group's leader accusing Trump of exacerbating the pandemic. Heading the war room is Zac Petkanas, a former adviser to Hillary Clinton and former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Sarah Chase, a former research associate for the presidential campaign of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is joining the team as well.

Patrick Devlin, former Communications Director for Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., will also serve as an adviser to the war room. War rooms are generally set up within political organizations to provide rapid response to the media cycle.

Leslie Dach, Chair of Protect Our Care, described the war room as a way to "inform the American people about the science and facts about the coronavirus and to educate the public on the Trump’s administration’s ongoing failure to provide honest information and listen to the experts and the science."

“As a result America does not have the testing it needs, our health care workers don’t have the equipment they need, and our hospitals are not prepared," Dach added.

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Brad Woodhouse, Protect Our Care's executive director said: “This team has a wealth of know-how, experience and expertise and with the coronavirus crisis, which has been exacerbated by President Trump’s failure to prepare, we need the best in the business working on advocacy efforts to hold President Trump accountable for his failure to lead."

Protect Our Care has been tied to "dark money" organizations like Arabella Advisors, which backs other groups attacking the president over the coronavirus response.

Specifically, it houses the New Venture Fund and Sixteen Thirty Fund, both of which support another Democrat-aligned group -- American Bridge -- that's been preparing an ad hitting Trump on the coronavirus.

The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that Pacronym is planning to spend $5 million on ads attacking Trump's response to the pandemic. That PAC is affiliated with the New Venture Fund and Acronym, whose board includes former Obama adviser David Plouffe. The ads will target five swing states (Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Arizona) and run on major digital platforms like Facebook.

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Protect our Care, which has been described as a project of the Sixteen Thirty Fund, has also been running an ad against Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., reportedly tying his opposition to ObamaCare to the coronavirus.

On Thursday, Twitter declined to flag another ad attacking Trump's coronavirus response.

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The Trump campaign alleges that the ad replayed Trump saying the coronavirus was Democrats' latest "hoax" without supplying the proper context. Twitter reportedly refused the campaign's request to flag the ad as "manipulated media," indicating it met the site's guidelines.

"Fellow Americans," a 501(c)(4) nonprofit, ran the ad but it's unclear where the group originated. Its website is relatively sparse and vaguely refers to opposing political division in the United States.