Trump need the GOP to unify around him right now.
Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is set to endorse Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination in a rally in Des Moines on Monday evening. This information has been confirmed by sources familiar with the event’s planning, as reported by Fox News. The endorsement is seen as a significant boost to DeSantis’s presidential aspirations, especially as polls indicate he currently trails former President Donald Trump, who is the front-runner both in Iowa and in national surveys.
Reynolds, a popular two-term Republican governor in Iowa, will join DeSantis as a “special guest” at his rally in Des Moines, as indicated by a social media account linked to the Florida governor’s presidential campaign.
Iowa holds a pivotal role in the race for the White House, historically marking the beginning of the GOP presidential nominating calendar with its caucuses. Reynolds had previously faced criticism from Trump earlier in the year for her commitment to remaining neutral in the presidential nomination race, a stance in line with past Iowa governors.
Despite staying neutral as the field of 2024 GOP nomination contenders expanded to over a dozen candidates, Reynolds, who won re-election convincingly for a second term, had not ruled out the possibility of endorsing a candidate as the January 15 Iowa caucuses approached.
DeSantis has concentrated the majority of his campaign efforts in Iowa over the past few months, making stops in 87 of the state’s 99 counties. Meanwhile, Trump remains the dominant front-runner for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination as he seeks his third consecutive White House bid. His lead expanded during the spring and summer, despite facing multiple indictments, making him the first former or current president in American history to be indicted for a crime.
DeSantis appears to have secured crucial support from Reynolds, but Trump received endorsements from seven state legislators from Florida, including five who had previously endorsed DeSantis.
As the rivalry between DeSantis and Trump continues to unfold, attention is also focused on the endorsement of another early-state governor, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu, who is known for his criticism of Trump within the GOP. New Hampshire is the first primary and second overall contest in the Republican presidential nominating calendar.
Sununu has stated his intention to endorse one of the Republican presidential candidates ahead of the New Hampshire primary. He recently campaigned alongside DeSantis and, more recently, with former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who served as ambassador to the United Nations during the early years of the Trump administration. In recent polls in New Hampshire and South Carolina, Haley has surpassed DeSantis for second place.