With five weeks to go before the election, President Donald Trump was back in Minnesota Wednesday to headline a GOP fundraiser in Shorewood and then hold an evening rally in Duluth.

Several dozen supporters were gathered behind barricades across from Air Force One shortly after his arrival at 4:08 p.m. on the Minnesota National Guard side of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Among them were Minnesota Senate Republican Leader Paul Gazelka, House GOP Leader Kurt Daudt, and U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis.

It is Trump’s seventh visit to Minnesota since taking office, and his second to northern Minnesota since early voting started in the state on Sept. 18, when he rallied supporters in Bemidji while Democrat challenger Joe Biden met with union members in Duluth.

The focus on northern Minnesota underscores the importance of working-class voters in the region to both campaigns.

Ahead of Trump’s visit, Biden’s campaign released a list of endorsements from 45 leaders in Minnesota’s Iron Range. Biden, meanwhile, embarked on eight stop-train tour through Ohio and Pennsylvania.

The president’s foray into the state marks the first of a series of campaign stops this week by the candidates and their surrogates.

Former Second Lady Jill Biden is scheduled to campaign in Minnesota on Saturday, making her second stop in the state since her husband secured the Democratic nomination.

Eric Trump, the president’s second son, is scheduled to hold an event Thursday in Becker, Minn. And Biden’s running mate, California U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, is scheduled to address a virtual gathering of the DFL’s annual Humphrey-Mondale dinner Thursday evening.

Trump’s trip to Minnesota comes a day after a testy debate with Biden, the first of three scheduled presidential debates before the election.

Hours before leaving Washington, Trump took to Twitter to take credit for quelling the civil unrest that rocked the Twin Cities after the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd. “Heading to Minnesota today,” Trump tweeted. “Saved Minneapolis after the Dem LEFT almost let it be TOTALLY destroyed! #MAGA”

The riots and arson were brought under control after DFL Gov. Tim Walz called in the Minnesota National Guard and the State Patrol at the request of Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey.

Dozens of protesters and Trump supporters greeted Trump’s motorcade as he made his way through residential streets in Shorewood for a fundraiser in the home of Cambria President and CEO Marty Davis, a GOP donor who has led efforts to urge Walz to reopen much more of the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a Republican National Committee official, the event was expected to bring in $7 million for Trump Victory, a joint fundraising committee of the Trump campaign and the party.

A new MPR News/Star Tribune/KARE-11 Minnesota Poll of 800 likely voters a week before the debate showed Biden leading Trump by 48% to 42%, with 8% undecided.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Staff Writer Katy Read contributed to this report.

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