Tom Steyer: Key to Nevada, South Carolina success is spending time there, not just money

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Billionaire Tom Steyer failed to generate much momentum after the Democrats’ early contests in Iowa and New Hampshire, but he’s poised for better results in Nevada and South Carolina and he credits that to more than just money.

Steyer has pumped over $200 million into his campaign, but he has also been on the ground in those states. According to a RealClearPolitics average, Steyer has been polling fourth in Nevada and third in South Carolina, both ahead of the Iowa winner, former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Steyer said he wanted to finish in at least second place in those states.

“I’ve spent more time in Nevada than any other candidate, and I’ve spent more time in South Carolina than any other candidate,” Steyer told ABC News’ “This Week” on Sunday.

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“I’ve actually been spending the time and we have people on the ground in both states, from those states, actually going out, talking to people, organizing, listening and coming up with a message that matters,” he said. “That’s really why I’m doing well in Nevada and South Carolina, because I’ve put in the time, listened to the people, and I’m talking to their actual issues.”

Steyer noted that he was doing well among minority voters in those states, particularly African-American and Latino voters.

“I’m putting together the kind of coalition that we’re going to have to have in November of 2020 to beat Donald Trump,” he said. Steyer also noted that Nevada and South Carolina were more diverse than Iowa and New Hampshire.

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That diversity is what makes those states so important, Steyer said in a separate interview with CBS News’ “Face the Nation.”

“Both of these states reflect the kind of diversity that is America, and that is the Democratic party,” he said. “And, I think whoever is going to be the candidate has got to be able to show that he or she can pull together that diverse big tent that is the Democratic party.”



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