Report: Trump to target 17 states
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Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpEsper sidesteps question on whether he aligns more with Mattis or Trump Warren embraces Thiel label: 'Good' As tensions escalate, US must intensify pressure on Iran and the IAEA MORE’s presidential campaign will home in on 17 battleground states ahead of this fall’s general election, according to a Wednesday report.

Trump’s priority list includes Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin, The Wall Street Journal reported.

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The Journal said Jim Murphy, Trump’s political director, announced the targets during a meeting with GOP House members earlier Wednesday.

Murphy’s list downplays Trump’s past pledges to compete in both California and New York.

Four of the states — Arizona, Georgia, Indiana and Missouri — traditionally lean Republican, the Journal pointed out, but Trump will look to shore up his numbers there. Most of the others are more traditional battlegrounds.

Minnesota has not voted for a GOP presidential nominee since 1972, while Republicans have not carried Maine since 1988.

Trump may struggle in Arizona and Georgia, the Journal added, due to growing Hispanic voting blocs there that may reject the billionaire.

Senior adviser Karen Giorno on Wednesday said Trump’s campaign is not worried about losing any typically red states, however.

“We have a movement,” said Giorno, who also oversees Trump’s efforts in Florida, the nation’s largest swing state. "We already have a built-in army of supporters. We always defend our home turf. I am not concerned that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhy Trump's bigoted tropes won't work in 2020 The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet GOP put on the back foot by Trump's race storm MORE is going to flip those states to blue.”

Rep. Lou BarlettaLouis (Lou) James BarlettaHead of Pennsylvania GOP resigns over alleged explicit texts Trump's most memorable insults and nicknames of 2018 GOP trading fancy offices, nice views for life in minority MORE (R-Pa.) on Wednesday said Trump could gain traction in his home state, which has not backed a GOP presidential nominee since 1988.

“It’s very difficult for a Republican to win but I believe Mr. Trump will because you have a lot of blue-collar workers and his economic message really resonates,” he said.

Trump has repeatedly vowed to compete in California and New York, which traditionally tilt Democratic in presidential elections but handed him big wins in the GOP primary.