Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is stagnant in Iowa despite a major political endorsement from Gov. Kim Reynolds, according to a memo from Trump pollster Tony Fabrizio.
The subject line reads:
DESANTIS STAGNATES DESPITE REYNOLDS’ ENDORSEMENT, DEBATE PERFORMANCES AND CONSOLIDATION OF THE FIELD – FINDS HIMSELF IN STATISTICAL TIE WITH HALEY FOR 2ND WHILE TRUMP DOMINATES FIELD BY BETTER THAN 2 TO 1.
The memo details the results of the latest Fabrizio, Lee & Associates survey, taken among 600 likely 2024 Iowa Republican caucusgoers, which finds former President Donald Trump leading the field with 43 percent support — up one point from the 42 percent garnered in October.
DeSantis comes in a distant second, 24 points behind with 19 percent support. That reflects a two-point drop from the 21 percent support he saw in the Hawkeye State in October. Further, this survey was fielded after Reynolds endorsed DeSantis, suggesting that it did little to nothing for the presidential hopeful, politically speaking. And that is not due to people not knowing, as 86 percent of respondents said they saw, read, or heard about her endorsement of DeSantis.
RELATED — Iowa Gov. Reynolds: Trump Can’t Win in 2024, Ron DeSantis Can
What is more, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley is gaining on DeSantis, three points behind with 16 percent support. That reflects a two-point increase from the survey in October. In other words, the gap between Haley and DeSantis has reduced from seven points to three over the past month — a positive trend for Haley, whose campaign is investing $10 million in ads in Iowa and New Hampshire in hopes of improving her standing and trouncing DeSantis.
The memo also combats the DeSantis campaign’s narrative that competitors dropping out of the race will help him, pointing out that Haley was actually the number one second choice for supporters of South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, who dropped out of the race earlier in November. After Haley, 22 percent said Trump was their second-choice candidate, and DeSantis came in third, with 16 percent choosing him as their second-choice candidate.
The memo’s bottom line reads:
This data underscores five crucial facts – 1) President Trump continues to dominate the GOP field in IA by better than a 2 to 1 margin, 2) Gov. Reynolds’ endorsement did NOT give DeSantis the boost that their allies predicted, 3) consolidation of the field is NOT helping DeSantis, it is helping Haley, 4) DeSantis’ performance in the debates has NOT helped his standing in IA, and 5) DeSantis, once in clear possession of 2nd place, now finds himself in a “dog fight” with Haley who continues make gains while DeSantis stagnates.
The memo coincides with other Iowa surveys telling a similar story. A recent Iowa State University/Civiqs poll, fielded after Reynolds’ endorsement, also found DeSantis failing to see any positive movement in his direction, 36 points behind Trump with 18 percent support.
📊 2024 IOWA REPUBLICAN CAUCUS
• Trump — 54% (+36)
• DeSantis — 18%
• Haley — 12%
• Ramaswamy — 6%
• Christie — 3%
• Scott — 2%
• Burgum — 1%
• Hutchinson — 0%
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) November 16, 2023
The latest RealClearPolitics (RCP) data shows Haley trailing behind DeSantis in Iowa by an average of three percent.