Presidential Hopefuls Vie For the Lone Star State

Because of the tight race for the Democratic nomination, both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are investing heavily in the Texas primary, sinking millions of dollars in ads. It shows that the Lone Star State has become a major player leading to the Whitehouse.

Iowa's day has come and gone.  Super Tuesday is now a distant memory. All political eyes are now on Texas.

"It's going to be exciting, it should be fun," says Smith County Republican Party Chairperson Marcia Daughtrey.

It's a race that's all but decided for making Texas a key player and exciting a lot of local politicos.

"It's neck and neck, depending on how you count the votes, it's a tie, and Texas could well produce the momentum for the victory , if it doesn't decide the victory," says Smith County Democratic Party Chairperson David Henderson.

Especially on the democratic side, where it's down to two--Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

"I would expect either or both of them to come through here at least once, maybe more," Henderson adds.

Hillary Clinton has already made her way to the Lone Star State, stopping in El Paso, Corpus Christi, McAllen, and San Antonio. Meanwhile, the TV ad blitz is on for both candidates.  Clinton airing ad right here in East Texas.

On the republican side, no word yet on the hot spots Mike Huckabee, John McCain, or Ron Paul will visit, but East Texas may very well be one of them.

"I look for them to come through, we're not just as the governor said an ATM card for the candidates, we're going to actually be a player and I'm excited about that," Daughtrey says.

And you should be excited too, because now we know, our vote really does count.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton will debate on the campus of UT Austin February 21.

Tracy Watler, Reporting