Trump all set for Iowa caucus, but rivals DeSantis, Haley seek to close ranks and spring surprise

Trump all set for Iowa caucus, but rivals DeSantis, Haley seek to close ranks and spring surprise


T.N. Ashok

Washington, Jan 9 (IANS) With less a week to go for the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire to follow to decide the GOP nomination for the Republican candidate for the 2024 presidential election, former President Donald Trump is brimming with confidence while rivals Ron DeSantis and Nikki Haley are betting their odds to at least close the distance with Trump so that they have an outside chance with voters to get past him.

Poll predictions are that even if Trump closed with high leads in Iowa and New Hampshire, voters would do a double take if both Nikki and DeSantis coming very close to Trump and think if the latter are better than Trump who carries a huge legal burden with him into 2024, media reports said.

Ted Cruz from Texas upped New Yorker Trump in Iowa in 2016 though Trump was ahead of him in polls and points.

There’s less than a week until the GOP Iowa Caucus next Monday night, and Trump is the one to beat, media reports said..

He is dominating polls with a 20-30 point lead and it now looks like a battle for the 2nd place, with DeSantis and Haley are positioning themselves as the best Republican Trump alternative.

Trump didn’t win the Iowa caucuses back in 2016. But this time, his campaign in the Red state is very well organised.

Though Haley and DeSantis have begun attacking Trump directly for the chaos he creates with his errant rhetoric without going into the merits of the legal cases against him, they end up ultimately going at each other's throats.

Businessman Vivek Ramaswamy has crossed every county in the state -- twice -- but is still struggling to overcome the rest of his opponents. Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, meanwhile, isn’t even putting energy into Iowa, and is instead focusing on New Hampshire’s contest later this month (January 23).

While Iowa only makes up 1.6 per cent of delegates at the Republican convention -- and 49 more states will vote -- it commands a lot of media attention because it goes first. A great result (or one that surpasses media & party expectations) can help a contender gain momentum or kill a campaign that doesn’t meet expectations, MO News, a podcast and aggregator of news from various sections of the media said. .

Trump is polling over 60 per cent nationally in the contest for the GOP nomination, leading by nearly 40+ points. The lead is historic for a primary without an incumbent President, and no candidate has rallied from such a deficit to win the nomination in the modern primary era, the Washington Post reports.

But, the challenges he faces around his name appearing on November’s ballot are more than political. A number of legal questions remain.The US Supreme Court agreed to hear Colorado’s 14th Amendment case on February 8 over Trump's 2024 ballot eligibility, after the state booted him from the ballot.

Trump faces 91 felony counts across four trials, including two separate indictments for alleged election subversion and one for withholding classified documents (Mar a Lago in Florida) after leaving the White House. Claims of his executive immunity as President are also under scrutiny.

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