Texas Republicans sound alarm about rapidly-evolving state… Trump looms large in critical NC race…

Texas Republicans sound alarm about rapidly evolving state

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas Republicans are sounding the alarm as Democratic presidential candidates get ready for their debate next week in Houston, warning that the Lone Star State could become more purple if the party doesn’t treat it as a 2020 battleground.

Most in the GOP are confident President Trump will win Texas and its 38 electoral votes next year, and they think Texas GOP Sen. John Cornyn will turn aside his Democratic challenger.

But they are worried they will lose more House seats a cycle after Democrats clawed back two districts as they retook their majority.

Five House Republicans have retired, including three in seats targeted by Democrats. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rates them as either toss-ups or lean Democratic.

More broadly, Texas Republicans say the GOP can’t rest on its laurels in a state that is growing more competitive.

“We need all hands on deck and all Texans to pull together to make sure we don’t let the Democrats put an end to the longest successful run in Texas history,” said James Dickey, the chairman of the Texas Republican Party.

Trump looms large in critical N.C. race

PEMBROKE, N.C. – David Locklear and James Oxendine work on the same construction crew and both call rural Robeson County, North Carolina, home. They arrived together to cast early votes in next week’s House special election.

From there, the two diverged, and it had little to do with the candidates on the 9th Congressional District ballot.

Locklear, 65, said his vote for Democrat Dan McCready was mainly about registering his opposition to President Donald Trump: “I don’t like his attitude, period,” he said.

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