Abbott, O'Rourke campaign on last day of early voting

Gov. Greg Abbott and Beto O'Rourke are still on the campaign trail on the last day of early voting in Texas.

Abbott kicked off a three-town campaign drive Friday morning at a Driftwood restaurant, where he predicted a big red victory not just in Texas but also on Capitol Hill.

 "When they go to Washington, D.C. the first thing they are going to do is fire Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House," said Abbott.

O’Rourke began his the last day of early voting in DeSoto and he was also making promises.

"That's why we are going to expunge or delete the arrest records for those who've served time for marijuana possession," said O’Rourke.

Both candidates also had a similar message for their supporters.

"And this is an election of our lifetimes because our lives are literally on the ballot," said O'Rourke.

"To say the least, there's a whole lot at stake in this election," said Abbott.

There is a sense of urgency for both camps, not just because Friday is the last day of early voting. Turn out remains lower than expected. 

The election could very well come down to people like Hays County resident Laura Singleton, who as of Friday morning had not voted. She plans on voting Tuesday.

"Why am I waiting? I just got back into town yesterday," said Singleton.

Both campaigns are urging supporters to contact friends who have not voted.

 "It is time for everybody to get off the sidelines and get into the game," said Abbott.

Democrats believe low turnout will let them flip the polls. 

"So my question for you. Are you ready to win? Then let's do the work to make sure that we win," said O’Rourke.

FOX 7 Austin spoke to political analyst Brian Smith with St. Edward's University about the turnout impact. "The races may be closer than people might expect," said Smith.

Smith warned voter apathy may not mean a November surprise. "The parties are going to have to look and see where is the low turnout," said Smith.

History may help indicate who had the best opportunity.

"Well, I think who has the opportunity is the Republican Party. I think right now the lower voter turnout is restoring Texas turnout, maybe closer to 2014, where the Republicans won big statewide as opposed to 2018, which is a much better year for the Democrats. And that was buttressed by higher turnout," said Smith.

O’Rourke will spend election night in El Paso. Abbott will be in McAllen.