Nov 8, 2023 - Politics

Reynolds' DeSantis endorsement may help narrow GOP presidential field

Kim Reynolds speaking into mic with Ron DeSantis

Ron DeSantis with Kim Reynolds during a Freedom Blueprint event in Des Moines, Iowa, on March 10. Photo: Kathryn Gamble/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds endorsed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the 2024 Republican presidential primary, but local political experts say it's unlikely her support will sway voters away from former President Trump.

Why it matters: The endorsement could help narrow the field and give DeSantis an edge over other contenders like Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy.

State of play: "I believe [Trump] can't win," Reynolds told NBC News in a joint interview with DeSantis on Monday, adding, "and I believe that Ron can."

What they're saying: Reynolds' endorsement is a "rare admission" that Republicans are worried about Trump's chances against President Joe Biden, ISU politics professor Steffen Schmidt wrote in his analysis.

  • While Iowa polling results show Trump ahead in the state, the general election is expected to "pose a challenge for Trump," Schmidt said.

Between the lines: Reynolds initially said she was not endorsing and wanted Iowa to be a host to all GOP candidates.

  • But with less than 10 weeks until the caucuses, Iowa isn't going to lose out on visits from presidential hopefuls at this point.

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