Gov. DeSantis makes future plans after 2nd place Iowa caucus position

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By Carina

Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida secured a notable second place in the Iowa Caucus on Monday night, exceeding some polling expectations and setting the stage for the next primaries in New Hampshire and South Carolina. 

This outcome poses questions about the implications for DeSantis’s campaign moving forward.

DeSantis’s performance and campaign response

DeSantis’s campaign team responded positively to his Iowa performance despite former President Donald Trump’s significant lead. 

Finishing with roughly 21% of the votes, DeSantis surpassed the Real Clear Politics average prediction of 15.7%. 

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A senior DeSantis campaign official told Fox News Digital, “They couldn’t kill him. He is not only still standing, but he’s now earned his ticket out of Iowa. This is going to be a long battle ahead, but that is what this campaign is built for. The stakes are too high for this nation, and we will not back down.”

Former Ambassador Nikki Haley, who was anticipated to perform strongly, finished behind DeSantis, solidifying his position as a leading candidate.

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DeSantis’s defiant post-caucus speech

In his post-caucus speech, DeSantis conveyed a resolute message to his supporters. 

“I can tell you, because of your support, in spite of all that they threw at us, everyone against us, we’ve got our ticket punched out of Iowa,” he said. 

Echoing a sense of responsibility and commitment, DeSantis added, “This is our responsibility to carry this torch and to preserve this sacred fire of liberty… I am going to get the job done for this country. I am not going to make any excuses, and I guarantee you this. I will not let you down.”

Discussions on DeSantis’s future in GOP race despite Iowa outcome

Despite the close finish in Iowa, there are ongoing discussions about DeSantis’s momentum and ability to compete with Trump in upcoming states. 

Notably, Kellyanne Conway, former senior advisor to President Trump, advised that DeSantis should continue his campaign regardless of his Iowa placement.

Fox News Chief Political Analyst Brit Hume highlighted the historical significance of a second-place finish in Iowa, suggesting it could lead to securing the GOP nomination. 

“You finish second in Iowa it’s worth something,” Hume noted.

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Social media reactions and political analysis

Some social media commentators have suggested that DeSantis and other candidates should consider withdrawing from the race in light of Trump’s dominant

performance in Iowa. 

However, GOP strategist Alex Conant expressed the personal and emotional nature of such a decision, telling Fox News Digital, “Deciding to drop out is the hardest decision a presidential candidate can make. It’s deeply personal and emotional, no matter how obvious or rational it seems.” 

He added, “If DeSantis does not beat Trump in Iowa tonight, he won’t beat him anywhere, and his campaign will be effectively over. But it will be up to him when to drop out, and that’s anyone’s guess.”

DeSantis committed to long campaign, ready for challenges ahead

Despite these speculations, DeSantis has reaffirmed his commitment to the campaign. “This campaign is built for the long haul,” said DeSantis Comms Director Andrew Romeo. 

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He emphasized their strategy to compete for every delegate and the readiness for a protracted campaign, stating, “We hope Donald Trump is ready for a long, scrappy campaign as we work to share Ron DeSantis’ vision across America. Game on.”

Following the Iowa Caucus, DeSantis is scheduled to campaign in South Carolina and New Hampshire, signaling his intent to maintain a strong presence in the early primary states. 

His campaign has highlighted the importance of these states, with Romeo noting, “That begins on Monday’s Iowa Caucus, and the next day, we will kick our campaign into overdrive in both South Carolina and New Hampshire.”

DeSantis bolsters campaign in South Carolina amidst GOP race dynamics

DeSantis’s campaign has also emphasized its groundwork in South Carolina, particularly in light of Nikki Haley’s presence in her home state. 

“Despite South Carolina being Nikki Haley’s home state, DeSantis has already built up an impressive grassroots organization,” a campaign spokesperson said. 

This includes endorsements from many current and former elected officials, showcasing the depth of DeSantis’s support network.

As the Republican race moves forward, Trump holds substantial leads in polls in New Hampshire and South Carolina. 

DeSantis’s Iowa finish shapes strategy for upcoming GOP primaries

The dynamics of these upcoming primaries could be crucial in shaping the trajectory of DeSantis’s campaign and the overall GOP nomination process.

Governor Ron DeSantis’s second-place finish in the Iowa Caucus has set the stage for an intense and strategic campaign in the upcoming primaries. 

While facing the challenge of competing against a strong contender like Donald Trump, DeSantis’s campaign remains determined and focused, signaling a robust and long-term electoral battle ahead. 

As the political landscape evolves, the strategies and decisions made by the DeSantis campaign in the next few weeks will be pivotal in determining the direction of the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.

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