Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis scramble in desperate bid to catch frontrunner Trump with just 49 DAYS until the Iowa caucuses

The primary sprint has begun with Thanksgiving in the rearview mirror and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley have just seven weeks to convince Iowans to vote for them over former President Donald Trump.

DeSantis and Haley are neck-and-neck in second place in Iowa, which is critical for candidates looking to earn momentum quickly.

It will hold its caucuses on January 15, followed by the New Hampshire primary eight days later.

While Iowa is always crucial in narrowing the presidential field, it could also determine whether there is a contest at all this year.

Although Trump is embroiled in several legal battles, he is still the heavy favorite in Iowa and leads by dozens of points in national polls.

Donald Trump is still the leading frontrunner in Iowa with just 49 days until the caucuses – but that hasn’t stopped Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley from trying to cash in on their second-place finish behind the ex-president . Pictured: Trump speaking at a rally in Fort Dodge, Iowa on November 18

Haley and DeSantis are tied for second place in Iowa in several polls and are spending a lot of time in the state, which is key to gaining momentum in the primaries

However, DeSantis has received some major endorsements in the Hawkeye State, including from influential Gov. Kim Reynolds and Iowa evangelical leader Bob Vander Plaats.

Florida’s governor has stormed Iowa, making the state a major focus in his 2024 presidential primaries.

He has committed to completing the so-called “full Grassley” — a reference to longtime Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley — campaigning in all 99 of the state’s counties.

On Saturday, December 2, DeSantis will be in his final county when he stops in Newton.

“The reality is that you need a strong mix of paid media, candidate presence and ground game to win an Iowa caucus, and no one is performing better in all three areas than us as we reach the final stretch,” says DeSantis communications director Andrew Romeo. said in a statement about the impressive feat.

Haley has also spent a significant amount of time at Iowa, although she did not fully dedicate herself to Grassley.

A poll last month showed Haley and DeSantis in second place at 16 percent, while Trump was in first place at 43 percent. Meanwhile, a separate poll earlier in November also showed the two tied at 17 percent, with Trump leading at 44 percent.

While Trump visited the state several times during the primaries, he was able to spend less time on the ground while maintaining his significant lead over the rest of the field.

DeSantis has received major endorsements in Iowa – including from Iowa’s beloved Governor Kim Reynolds (left). Pictured: DeSantis and Reynolds speaking at a press conference in Davenport, Iowa on November 7

DeSantis and Haley are pictured with biotech entrepreneur and fellow 2024 presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy at the Family Leader’s Thanksgiving Family Forum in Des Moines, Iowa

“DeSantis seems to have the best grassroots work here, but it’s nothing compared to what people have done in the past,” said Andy Cable, a longtime Republican activist in Hardin County, Iowa, told The New York Times.

‘Trump doesn’t need the base. His people will just show up. Nikki came late, but I’m not sure she has the on-site organization to actually do it.”

Besides Trump, Haley and DeSantis, the other Republican candidates still in the race are author and biotech billionaire Vivek Ramaswamy, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and Texas-based businessman and Pastor Ryan Binkley.

Never Back Down, the super PAC backing Desantis’ candidacy, last week lost its CEO Chris Jankowski, who said it was “untenable” for him to get Florida’s governor elected.

DeSantis will debate Democratic California Governor Gavin Newsom on Thursday during a televised event hosted by Fox News and moderated by Sean Hannity. The Florida leader says the debate is important because Newsom could end up on the Democratic ticket in 2024 if President Joe Biden does not run.

DeSantis has committed to the “full Grassley,” which refers to longtime Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley and campaigns in all 99 counties in the Hawkeye State. Pictured: Ron DeSantis, Florida first lady Casey DeSantis and their three children Madison, 6, Mason, 5, and Mamie, 3, attend a campaign event on November 7, even in Davenport, Iowa

Haley has gained momentum after impressive performances in the Republican primaries, bucking attacks from her competitors and expressing some of her more moderate positions — including urging her party not to push for a national abortion ban.

Even with DeSantis’ full Grassley and high-profile endorsements in Iowa, it’s still unlikely he or Haley will catch Trump with just 49 days to go until the Iowans caucus for their preferred candidate.

New Hampshire will hold its first primaries on January 23 – not to be confused with the first caucuses in Iowa.

But in the Granite State, DeSantis’ support has largely collapsed, with him landing in fifth place in a recent poll.

Republican voters in New Hampshire tend to be more moderate than in Iowa.