LINDALE — The top official in the Republican Party of Texas came to Smith County on Friday night to rally voters ahead of the March primary.

The Smith County Republican Party hosted the free event with James Dickey, the state party chairman. The event brought around 30 people to Texas Music City Grill & Smokehouse in Lindale.

Dickey said, “The things we need you guys to do, a) make sure you and everyone you know is registered to vote in the state of Texas; b) help refer to (our) great staff, volunteers and candidates. … The third thing is, get involved … helping candidates and helping work toward initiatives.”

“We can do this in 2020. We can make sure that we win back more seats in the Texas House so we get a better leadership,” Dickey said. “We have got to earn every vote in Texas. … We can do this. We can do it together. God bless you. God bless Texas.”

Elisabeth Ayub, spokeswoman for the Smith County Republican Party, said in an interview that the party hosted the event to keep people engaged during an election when Democrats are seeking to make inroads in the state.

She pointed to an Aug. 2 tweet from U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, of New York, that read, “Ponte las pilas por 2020, porque vamos a trabajar duro y ganar en Texas,” or “Get ready for 2020, because we’re going to work hard and win in Texas.”

“I think it’s important for us, especially going into 2020, to keep our base consistently motivated to stay engaged and participate and encourage those that they are friends with and either family to be registered to vote,” Ayub said.

“The Democrats are putting a lot of time and attention into Texas, and we are just going to continue to focus on keeping Texas red,” she said.

TWITTER and INSTAGRAM: @_erinmansfield

Government Reporter

Erin came to Tyler from Vermont, where she worked for and previously the Rutland Herald. She received her B.A. in Economics and Spanish from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where she also attended journalism school.

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