CARROLL, Iowa — Donald Trump is the clear leader in Iowa caucus polls. But the battle for second place between Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis is escalating.
With four months until Iowans head to the caucuses in January, Trump seemed like he had already moved on from the primary on Friday. The former president was headed to a fundraiser some 600 miles away from Iowa in South Dakota, and has already discussed in news interviews who he might choose as a running mate in the general election.
So as Ramaswamy and DeSantis courted voters in the Hawkeye State — Ramaswamy in person on Friday and DeSantis on local TV and headed here for a super PAC bus tour on Saturday — it seemed in some ways like the pair were locked in a battle for second place.
Their town-by-town fight for caucus support was on display at a winery in Carroll on Friday afternoon, where Ramaswamy was introduced to the crowd by a state lawmaker who represents the area and has already endorsed DeSantis.
“Even with my endorsement, I think it’s important for everybody to hear from everybody,” state Rep. Brian Best told The Messenger. “I was just happy to introduce him and let