BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Republican Presidential Candidate Ted Cruz made a pair of campaign stops in the Magnolia State on Tuesday. First in Tupelo then Olive Branch, part of his "Cruz Country" bus tour.
Biloxi engineer Brad Patano hasn't been that politically active in the past. But he's drawn to Ted Cruz and his conservative agenda.
"Cruz has exhibited courage to stand up to the Washington cartel and the status quo inside Washington even when it's not the easiest thing to do," said Patano.
Patano is part of Cruz's executive campaign team in Mississippi. While most of the other Republican presidential hopefuls are focusing on the early primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire. Patano believes Cruz visiting the state is a sign of his willingness to take ideas from all corners of the country.
"I think Ted Cruz's message is all 50 states are equally important," said Patano.
Even though Mississippi voters won't go to the polls to vote in the presidential primary until March 8th of next year. Patano says building early momentum now in Mississippi and other southern states could pay off in the long run.
"Senator Cruz recognized last year that there was a very strong conservative grass roots movement here," said Patano. "If nobody else is going to come here and capitalize on that then good for him for seeing that opportunity and seizing it."
Cruz has also visited the southern states of Arkansas and Tennessee over the last few days.