California Republicans are turning out to volunteer for Donald Trump’s campaign by knocking on doors in local communities, even though the Republican presidential nominee is thought to have no chance of winning the state.
Indeed, while Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton is sending busloads of California volunteers to next-door Nevada, the East Bay Times reports, the Trump campaign is keeping volunteers in liberal strongholds in the hope that “closeted” supporters will turn out to vote.
The deep-blue Golden State has not cast its electoral votes for a Republican since George H.W. Bush in 1988. The latest poll average from RealClearPolitics shows Clinton ahead of Trump by 22.2%. Though stranger surprises have happened — Clinton lost to rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in the Michigan primary though she was ahead by some 30 points — a California win seems impossible, especially as Democrats have used Trump’s unpopularity among many Latinos to register new voters.
Still, the Times reports, Trump reporters are turning out in droves, defying attempts to paint them as “racists.” And for now, at least, the campaign is not sending them over the border into Nevada, a state that Trump almost certainly needs to win (and is within striking distance, behind Clinton by 2.3% in the RealClearPolitics average). During the primary race earlier this year, when it seemed California might be the decisive contest, 100,000 Trump volunteers signed up statewide, the Times reports.
Early last week, Trump made quiet visits to Los Angeles and the Central Valley en route to a rally in Washington State. His private fundraiser in Tulare may have set a new record for a campaign event in the agricultural region, netting an estimated $1.3 million at one stop.
In June, Trump’s speech in San Jose was greeted by violence and riots, with supporters beaten and harassed outside the arena in full view of the national media. The mayor of San Jose blamed Trump for inciting the violence.
California has 55 electoral votes, the most of any state.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.