Updated Jan 15, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Trump cites past elections for 2024 confidence

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a caucus night rally at the Sheraton Hotel in West Des Moines, Iowa, on Feb. 1, 2016. Photo: Charles Ommanney/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Monday, hours before the Iowa caucuses, told reporters: "We've won it twice, as you know."

The big picture: Trump has a massive polling lead in Iowa, while Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley are likely battling over second place.

  • While Trump won the Iowa caucuses in 2020 as the incumbent president, he narrowly lost in 2016 to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
  • Following his 2016 caucuses loss, Trump falsely accused Cruz of stealing the Iowa caucuses and accused his opponent's campaign of deliberately spreading misinformation.
  • He won the 2016 election against Hillary Clinton and lost the 2020 election against Joe Biden. He won in the state of Iowa in both general elections.

What he's saying: "I think we're going to have a tremendous night tonight. The people are fantastic. I've never seen spirit like they have," the former president told reporters on Monday while leaving the Hotel Fort Des Moines.

  • Trump polled as the first choice for 48% of likely caucusgoers in the final NBC News/Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa poll ahead of Monday.
  • Haley was at 20%, while DeSantis was at 16%.
  • A Trump campaign spokesperson told Axios he was referring to the 2016 and 2020 elections in the remarks.

Follow live updates: Trump predicts "tremendous" night in Iowa while Haley and DeSantis make final pitches

Editor's note: This story and headline have been updated with additional details.

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