TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Mike Collier, a senior advisor to the Biden-Harris campaign, was in Tyler on Monday.
In an interview with KLTV, the former candidate for lieutenant governor said he believes Biden could win Texas, despite a close race.
“I think Biden and Harris have a chance at winning Texas,” Collier said. “It’s not assured, so people have to come out and vote.”
The last time Texas turned blue in a presidential election was the 1976 election of Jimmy Carter. In Smith County, voters have not turned the county blue since the 1948 re-election of Harry Truman.
“I think to win statewide, you don’t have to win everywhere. You just have to perform well,” Collier said. “West Texas and East Texas are not reflexively one party or the other. What they’re really worried about is the person and the policy. So, when you get the message out there about health care, jobs, and the economy, and that Joe Biden is a good man, that message is a winning message.”
Smith County Republican Party Chairman David Stein said despite Biden’s push, they’re confident in President Donald Trump winning Texas again.
“We’re well aware that democrats want Texas, and want it bad,” Stein said. “But so do we.”
Stein said he’s set a goal in Smith County to have the highest voter turnout in Texas, something the whole state has struggled with in previous elections. In the 2016 election, the state ranked near the bottom of the list for states with low voter turnout. Collier expects the opposite in November.
“There’s much more energy now on both sides,” Collier said. "I’m concerned that voter turnout will be so high, that we won’t have the infrastructure to handle it. I’m sure it’ll be fine, but it’s going to be remarkable.
More on this story Monday night on KLTV 7 News at 6.