Colorado GOP positioning itself as possible ‘pickup’ state as Trump launches 2020 campaign

DENVER -- President Donald Trump is officially launching his reelection campaign in Orlando, Florida Tuesday evening.

While the president lost Colorado by more than 136,000 votes in 2016, Colorado Republicans still see the state as a possible "pickup" state in 2020.

That is consistent with what Marc Lotter, Trump's director of strategic communications, told FOX31 earlier this year.

"We will be back in Colorado and we look forward to having a vigorous debate in Colorado," Lotter said.

Sources tell FOX31 political reporter Joe St. George that Trump has already hired several major staffers for the state and that Trump is expected to have more staffers in Colorado than in 2016.

Sen. Cory Gardner told FOX31 last week he believes Trump "certainly can" win the state.

Of course, Trump faces major obstacles. The state has only become more blue since the 2016 with the election of Gov. Jared Polis and a state legislature controlled by Democrats.

"I would love to see them waste money on Colorado," said Halisi Vinson, executive director of the Colorado Democratic Party.

Vinson believes the state rejected Trump once and will easily do so again.

"We aren't going to take anything for granted but he doesn't have a chance," Vinson said.

Steve Barlock, a longtime Trump supporter in the state, disagrees.

Barlock says he believes Trump is better positioned than four years ago because of the economy, what he perceives as an overreaching state legislature and the fact Republicans are more united.

"The economy right now is booming," Barlock said. "We aren't just ready for the fight, we are already fighting."

Barlock and other Trump supporters are celebrating Trump's reelection launch at several watch parties in Colorado. Training for volunteers and staffers is also taking place at these events.

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