By Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — President Donald Trump vows to win Minnesota in 2020, after narrowly losing the state to Hillary Clinton in 2016.

The president tweeted just this week that he will win Minnesota in 2020. It’s something he also said in Rochester last year. And while Minnesota has not voted for a Republican for president since 1972, political analyst David Schultz, who has written a book on swing states, says 2020 could be the year.

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“I think it’s definitely a possibility there,” Schultz said. “It’s about gathering 270 electoral votes, not winning the popular vote.”

Trump lost the state by less than 45,000 votes in 2016.

“Of the 87 counties in Minnesota, Clinton only won nine counties,” Schultz said.

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This year, the president has already appointed a Minnesota state director. The Trump Campaign gave us this statement:

Trump Victory continues to make key hires in critical states such as Minnesota. We are organizing early in the cycle to mobilize voters and add to our massive base of support throughout the state.

Putting Minnesota in play will also spread Democratic resources just a little bit thinner.

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“On the national level, if Democrats have to spend several million dollars defending Minnesota, they may not be able to put those dollars into Wisconsin,” Schultz said.

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The Trump campaign’s statement also said that Minnesota is part of their strategy to expand the Electoral College map, to put the campaign in the best position to deliver another win for the president.

Esme Murphy