How President Trump's visit to KC could impact Josh Hawley's campaign

Posted at 7:39 PM, Jul 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-23 23:25:36-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It's no secret the Missouri senate race is a tight one. RealClearPolitics has U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill leading Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley by one point.

A visit by President Donald Trump may be enough to tip the scales in Hawley's favor.

"Polling has showed that when the president comes in for a candidate they get a boost immediately in their numbers," Todd Graves, chairman of the Missouri Republican Party said. "President Trump won it by 19 points. We have two-thirds majority in the house and senate in the state legislature."

That's why this race is gaining national attention.

"It's pretty exciting having a president come in for a Senate campaign. It means that we have one of the most important Senate campaigns in the country this year and we've got a real good chance of turning a blue seat to a red seat," Graves said.

RELATED | Parts of downtown to close for President Trump's visit

President Trump will address the Veterans of Foreign Wars Convention in downtown Kansas City before speaking at a private fundraiser for Hawley.

"The president pays attention," Graves said. "He wants to maintain a majority in the Senate because of that Supreme Court confirmation and other confirmations coming up on other issues and suddenly it becomes a hot issue. We're already seeing a ton of TV ads."

Local Republicans also think this visit is just a preview of what's to come.

"This race is just starting out essentially and it's already a nail-biter," said Graves. "This is a big indicator that we're probably going to see him more than once this fall."