Donald Trump is ramping up his operations in Missouri after his campaign identified the state as a key battleground.
The campaign has opened a state headquarters in Jefferson City and hired two key operatives. Newly named State Director Aaron Willard and Communications Director Todd Abrajano are both veteran Missouri Republican strategists.
Willard contends part of his job will working to get Trump or Vice Presidential candidate Mike Pence to stage a rally in Missouri. Trump is already scheduled to be in the state for an Oct. 9 debate against Hillary Clinton at St. Louis’s Washington University. Willard said he could guarantee Trump would appear at the event, although Trump himself hasn’t committed to the debate schedule and has complained that two of them, including the one in St. Louis, are up against NFL football games on TV.
Willard also noted the campaign’s “day of action” scheduled for this Saturday, where the campaign’s local operation will work with the Missouri’s Republican Party to organize campaign volunteers across the state and “get that ground game started.”
Up until now, Trump’s operations around the country have largely resembled the stripped-down outfit he employed to secure the nomination. Despite a big increase in contributions from small donors last month, he’s relied on the Republican Party to provide key functions such as voter outreach.
Read more: Missourinet