O’Rourke rallies voters in Austin while Cruz campaigns with Cornyn

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The two men vying to represent Texas in the U.S. Senate hit the campaign trail yet again, urging people to head to the polls as early voting begins.

Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso, planned several stops around Austin Wednesday, rallying voters near polling places as he continues his statewide tour during the first week of early voting.

O’Rourke’s first stop was in southeast Austin at Houston School Park, a few blocks from an early voting location. He met a group of a few dozen supporters and spoke to them about issues like healthcare and the importance of voting.

Amber Alexander waited for O’Rourke in the rain. She’s never been inspired to vote in past elections, she said, but this one was different.

“I’ve also got a 14-month old,” she said. “His future is my life now, so I just wanted to make sure I give him the best future possible.”

Alexander voted Wednesday morning then wanted to meet her candidate. O’Rourke high-fived both her and her son before walking to the crowd to speak. He scheduled three more stops around Central Texas, the last in Round Rock at 3 p.m., before continuing on to East Texas.

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, meanwhile, continued his bus tour in Dallas, where he campaigned with his fellow Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn. 

Gov. Greg Abbott and President Donald Trump have been whipping up support for Cruz at rallies and other events. Monday’s rally in Houston drew thousands to hear the president.

Cruz and Cornyn stopped in central Texas Tuesday, telling a crowd in Georgetown that a vote for O’Rourke would mean a vote for impeaching the president and Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanuagh.

At his Dallas stop Wednesday, Cruz pointed to the strong economy and his record as a senator, encouraging people to donate to his campaign in the home stretch.

“We’re going to win this race,” he said. Cruz will make more than a dozen additional stops across Texas between now and election day. 

Early voting in the state remains strong, rivaling the numbers from the 2016 presidential election. By the end of Tuesday, more than 80,000 people in Travis County had cast ballots either in person or by mail.

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