Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis held a rally Saturday in the key early nominating state of Iowa after visiting all of its 99 counties.
DeSantis, who is currently polling at second in the state, is the only major presidential candidate to visit all of Iowa’s counties ahead of its nominating caucus on Jan. 15. The governor touted the visits, many of which his wife, Casey, and three young children joined him for, during his speech in Jasper County, east of Des Moines, while emphasizing his commitment to winning the state early next year.
“Are you ready to make history, Iowa? We’ve got a mission Jan. 15. We are going to win the Iowa caucus, and that is going to propel us to being the 47th president of the United States, and you’re going to make it happen — thank you,” DeSantis said. “To me, it was the right thing to do, because you need to actually get out of the media fog, you can’t just be on what’s on social media, don’t worry about what the cable stations are saying. Talk to real Americans, listen to real Americans, answer their questions, ask them for their support.”
DeSantis’ campaign has been touting its “Full Grassley” efforts in the state, as Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa pays a visit to all 99 counties each year.
“The fact that I’m willing to do this, that should show you that I consider myself a servant, not a ruler. And that’s how people that get elected should consider themselves. You’re not any better than the people that you are elected by, you come from the people, and you’re supposed to serve their interests. And you don’t put yourself above and try to govern for your own self-interest,” said DeSantis.
The governor has already received endorsements from prominent Republican leaders in Iowa, including that of Gov. Kim Reynolds and The Family Leader President Bob Vander Plaats. DeSantis also has the backing from 41 state lawmakers in Iowa, which is twice the amount of former President Donald Trump and eight times the amount of former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, according to his campaign.
Despite this, DeSantis has 17.3% support, behind Trump at 47%, followed by Haley with 14.3%, conservative businessman Vivek Ramaswamy with 5% and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie with 4%, according to the RealClearPolitics (RCP) average.
The Florida governor has fallen to fourth place behind Trump, Haley and Christie in New Hampshire, whose first-in-the-nation primary follows Iowa on Jan. 23, according to the RCP average. DeSantis is behind only Trump and Haley in South Carolina, whose primary is on Feb. 24.
Trump also held events Saturday in the key early nominating state, delivering remarks at a “Commit To Caucus” event in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, after an earlier event in Ankeny, Iowa.
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