Ron DeSantis Garners Pivotal Iowa Governor Endorsement in GOP Race

UNITED STATES: Kim Reynolds, the governor of Iowa, endorsed Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis on Monday, giving the Florida governor crucial backing in his effort to cut down on former President Donald Trump’s sizable lead in the polls.

At a Des Moines rally where DeSantis also spoke, Reynolds addressed a crowd of cheering supporters, saying, “Ron is focused, he is principled, he is results-driven.”

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“And in short, what I love most about Ron is that he gets things done,” she said.

The endorsement is unlikely to alter the basic fundamentals of the Trump-dominated Iowa campaign. However, according to multiple individuals close to the campaign, the DeSantis team has been chasing Reynolds’ endorsement for months, and the endorsements of well-known political figures can swing the election by a few percentage points.

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In a late-October Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll, 43% of probable caucus attendees said they would vote for Trump, while 16% of respondents expected to support DeSantis and former US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley. The polling for other contenders was in the single digits.

The state of Iowa holds significant importance in the Republican nominating process as it’s the first to determine its favoured nominee. On January 15, the state’s caucuses, which are local party gatherings where voters make their candidate choices, occur.

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Reynolds, 64, is well-liked in Iowa among conservatives. An August poll conducted by the Des Moines Register newspaper revealed that approximately 81% of likely participants in the state’s Republican caucuses express approval of her.

Reynolds has embraced “culture war” topics as governor, much like DeSantis. She has enacted legislation to limit the teaching of subjects related to gender and sexuality in public schools, as well as to prevent transgender students from using bathrooms that match their gender identity, among other actions.

Although Reynolds backed Trump during his presidency and campaigned alongside him in his 2020 re-election campaign, their rapport has soured. The former president has openly bemoaned in recent months that Reynolds has not endorsed him and has turned down invitations to appear with her.

In a post on Truth Social on Sunday, Trump stated that Reynolds’ support for DeSantis would signal “the end of her political career.”

This endorsement comes just two days prior to DeSantis’ participation in the third Republican primary debate in Florida, an event that Trump has chosen to skip.

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