SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - Early voting begins on Wednesday across North Carolina and the country is just 21 days away from the midterm elections. On Tuesday, Lara Trump, President Trumps daughter-in-law, was campaigning on behalf of three local Republicans, two of whom are in very competitive races as Democrats try to take control of the US House.
“The most important thing you can do is get out and vote," Mrs. Trump said, speaking to the weekly veteran’s group meeting at Thelma’s Down Home Cooking restaurant at the West End Plaza in Salisbury.
Trump was there to support 13th district representative Ted Budd and 8th district representative Richard Hudson, who says he thinks his party will hold the US House, but admits that there is strong competition across the country
“I think obviously in other parts of the country there are some headwinds against the Republicans," said Representative Hudson. (R-08) "I think the fear is always when your party wins the presidency, people relax and get complacent.”
“The use of family surrogates for the Trump campaign, particularly in this heavily competitive midterm election is not unusual just because they need Republicans to show up and vote and traditionally they do in midterm elections in NC, but this year Democrats have the energy and enthusiasm just as much as Republicans if not slightly more," said political scientist Dr. Michael Bitzer of Catawba College.
Bitzer says he sees the 13th District race, which pits Budd against Democrat Kathy Manning, as very competitive, as is the 9th District race with Republican Dr. Mark Harris facing Democrat Dan McCready.
Lara Trump did speak on behalf of Harris later in the day while visiting Lilesville.
In Salisbury, Mrs. Trump did speak about veteran’s issues, such as the VA Accountability act that she, and Representative Budd says has strengthened healthcare for vets.
“He (President Trump) has done so much with revitalizing the VA and that people are held accountable there and that veterans are getting the treatment that they need," Lara Trump said.
“We have to hold those employees of the VA to make sure they accountable and that’s what the VA accountability act is all about if there are some bad actors that are hurting the service to our veterans then we have to remove them, they have to be fired, that was very difficult to do before, it’s a little easier to do now," said Representative Budd, (R-13) "Take those few bad actors who were hurting so many, get them out of the system.”
Salisbury Mayor Al Heggins did greet Mrs. Trump on behalf of the City of Salisbury, and presented her with a candy dish featuring the Salisbury logo.
Lara Trump is a North Carolina native and attended NC State University.
WBTV did reach out to the Manning campaign for any comment or response, but there was not any reply.