Salt Lake City, Utah- (ABC4 Utah) – The National Democratic Committee is launching a new grassroots campaign in states across the country, and Utah is one of the first to get off the ground.
It’s the Victory Leaders Council of Utah, made up of elected democrats and other prominent members of the party.
Even state democrats are surprised by the focus the national party is putting on the historically red Beehive State.
“We’re not used to all the national attention during election years, so it’s sort of exciting to have some of that attention here,” said Utah Democratic Party Chair, Peter Corroon.
Corroon is one of the members of the newly formed VLC of Utah.
The DNC is launching the program in blue and red states that have not been contested in previous elections.
“We’ve got some great candidates running for office, so I think having us all on the same page, working the same direction not just for this election, but into the future I think will help change the face of the state and try to make it a little more blue,” said Corroon.
Corroon says Republican Nominee, Donald Trump presents an opportunity to do that.
But, Tim Chambless, an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Utah says democrats still have their work cut out for them.
“Right now the polls indicate that the republican incumbents running for reelection are in a superior position,” said Chambless.
He says even though Trump is unpopular with Utah voters it’s not hurting republicans in state wide races.
He thinks democrats have more opportunity further down the ticket.
“Certainly, in individual races, maybe in the State House and State Senate races we’ll see pick ups by the democrats,” said Chambless.
Corroon says that’s part of the party’s long term approach.
“What we need especially is to get things moving from the bottom up. Getting good people into office locally, then we can move them up the ticket,” said Corroon.
Chambless says Mitt Romney could be the X-Factor in Utah.
He believes if Romney publicly endorses a candidate it could have enough influence to swing the state.