President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign mockingly begged Democrats to try to compete with Republicans in stronghold states like Texas and Georgia.
Newly appointed campaign manager Bill Stepien spoke to about 100 reporters in a phone conference on the state of the 2020 re-election campaign.
“I would love, I would invite the Biden campaign to play in Texas,” Stepien said in response to a question from CNN. “They should play hard.”
Stepien recalled the exact same rumors about Georgia and Texas in 2016 when he worked on the president’s campaign and in subsequent years.
“They should go after Texas really, really heavily,” he continued. “Spend a lot of money in the Houston and Dallas media markets. I would invite them to do that. I would even buy their first ad.”
He noted that in Georgia, Republicans won in the midterm elections, despite Democrats pulling out all the stops.
“Midterm elections are really hard to win, and the Republicans won in 2018 with the president’s help,” he said.
He noted that in 2016, Trump won the state by five points.
“I’d invite the Democrats to spend a lot of money in the expensive media market of Atlanta and keep thinking it’s for real, because we had the same conversation in 2016,” he said.
Stepien even signaled positivity about winning in Arizona, a state where Republicans are facing some very tough polls.
“These are all states that come back home,” he said confidently.
Stepien signaled confidence that the president could win again in 2020, noting that his campaign had only increased staff and resources on the ground in important states that the president won in 2016, such as Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan.
“If we win any of these three states and the states the president won in 2016, Joe Biden stays in his basement and the president’s in the White House for four more years. It’s that simple.”
Stepien said he believed that previously blue states like Minnesota, New Hampshire, Maine, and Nevada were also in play.
“We already know where the votes are, we’ve already identified the voters, we’ve already talked to them,” he said. “We just got to do it again.”
He warned reporters about getting a false sense that the president would automatically lose, because of a series of bad public polls. Stepian also reminded them how wrong the polls were in 2016, and said that corporate pollsters had not learned their lesson.
“This will be a knockdown drag-out fight until the very end,” Stepien.