CNN Senior Political Analyst Ron Brownstein said that Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis’s attempt to portray himself as former President Donald Trump is a prominent political misstep.
Brownstein claims that Nikki Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, is gaining ground in the polls and could do better than DeSantis.
He noted that, like Mike Huckabee in 2008, Santorum in 2012, and Ted Cruz in 2016, DeSantis is running in Iowa to consolidate Evangelical support and increase turnout among voters. The problem is that after winning Iowa, each candidate saw their support drop precipitously in New Hampshire.
Brownstein claims that Haley is strengthening her support among white-collar, suburban Republicans, which is good news for her in New Hampshire. Brownstein stated that the success of Haley and DeSantis is more responsible for Haley’s elevation than Trump.
Many Republican primary voters have noticed her due to her strong performances in both debates. However, DeSantis has also had trouble with his work. Most Republican voters who embrace Trumpism, according to Brownstein, also favor Trump.
Therefore, Haley has had a more consistent appeal to the party’s faction that is opposed to Trump. The problem, as you imply, is that it’s not a majority, and she needs to figure out a method to attract some of those voters who currently back Trump but are not entirely dedicated to him if she or anyone else wants to challenge him genuinely.
DeSantis’ version of Trumpism without Trump raises whether her argument for generational change and electability will prove more enticing to those maybe-sometimes-Trump voters.
Trump garnered 43% support from Iowa voters, according to a Des Moines Register/NBC News/Mediacom poll released Monday. Both Haley and DeSantis received 16% of the vote. In the past two months, Haley’s approval rating has risen by 10 points, DeSantis’ has fallen by 3, and Trump’s has been increased by 1.
Between October 22nd and 26th, 404 potential Republican caucus-goers in Iowa were interviewed over the phone for the poll. The survey’s margin of error is 4.9 percentage points at the most.