US voters react to Trump’s commanding win in Iowa

Connie Queline

US voters react to Trump’s commanding win in Iowa

As expected, former President Donald Trump was the clear winner of the Iowa Caucuses with a landslide victory on Monday night. The result is the first step towards setting up a rematch with President Joe Biden in November.

The former president dominated the field in the deeply conservative state, taking over 50% of the vote and tightening his hold over a party increasingly in thrall to him. In the hours after his overwhelming victory, the BBC spoke to voters across the political spectrum and asked them what they made of Mr Trump’s electoral return.

While some Republicans – seemingly the majority of the party based off the Iowa results – think Mr Trump is the only one who can “save this nation”, others fear the divisive billionaire will lose once again to President Biden in the presidential election.

As for Democrats, some find it hard to imagine the majority of Americans would choose “to go back to chaos” and elect Mr Trump.

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Rom Solene

Rom is a Trump supporter who says last night’s resounding victory is proof he is the best option to face President Biden in November.

I was worried the polls would outperform him, but it turned out he came in pretty much where the polls were saying, perhaps even outperforming the polls a little bit. I was absolutely thrilled because it gives him a huge amount of momentum.

What [the win] does is it showcases Mr Trump’s appeal, despite what the mainstream media says and despite what the Democrats claim. His appeal actually is very broad because people are afraid of the direction this country is going in. People will look back to 2020 and, notwithstanding the pandemic, the world was a better place – and certainly this country was. As a Republican, and I know a lot of fellow Republicans feel the same way, it feels like we’re coming apart at the seams and there’s only one person who can heal us, bring us together and save this nation.

If you read the polls, they say Nikki Haley would stand a better chance against Mr Biden. But let’s assume Nikki Haley were the Republican nominee. Much of the media and the Democrats are going to turn on her in a very vicious manner, and I just don’t see her fighting back the way Mr Trump would. She is a politician in the same cut as, say, Mitch McConnell. She may poll better right now, but Mr Trump is the one that would definitely stand up to antagonists as well as be able to beat President Biden.

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Karen Kemp-Prosterman

Karen has a mixed race family in the north-east US. She says that protecting democracy and ensuring voting rights are her most important voting issues.

Given the danger Donald Trump’s views represent to the health of US democracy and impact to democracies worldwide, it is unsettling to see Republican voters choose a president who has demonstrated a desire to put his own interests before that of the country.

I believe the American voter has already decided that his personal ethos does not align with the values of our democracy. Since his defeat in 2020, he has only demonstrated a more extreme position regarding healthcare, economic and immigration policies – which are pressing issues today.

The support of Mr Trump’s base, I believe, has peaked and it’s hard to see it translating into more electoral support than currently exists. The difference between 2020 and 2024 is that we have had the benefit of having sanity restored for almost four years under a Joe Biden presidency. It’s hard to see the majority of American voters, actively choosing to go back to chaos.

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Deanna Lusk

A former Trump voter, Deanna has soured on Trump, in part because of the US Capitol riot and its aftermath for the Republican Party, and does not think he can beat President Joe Biden in the November general election.

I honestly think that Nikki Haley and Chris Christie on a ticket would win it for the Republicans. I don’t think that Donald Trump is going to win again. I think that maybe even the media will try to pump up what Iowa is saying, but Iowa is not a reflection of everyone in this country. But even with the failing policies that Joe Biden has, I still don’t think that [Mr Trump] will pull off a win.

The fight goes on. I think it has to. This is a repeat of when Mr Trump first ran for president. I think the media got deeply involved. I think they gave him the best airtime, whether that was negative or positive attention. And I think it’s their plan to do that all over again. It’s a horrible position to be in for the Republican Party…It’s smoke and mirrors. The Democrats want us to praise Mr Trump and keep having him front and centre because he’s going to lose.

In the Republican primary maybe he’ll dominate, but it’s a detriment to us at the election.

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Allison McCullough

Allison spent the majority of her life as a Democrat but recently began identifying as an Independent. She voted for Joe Biden in 2020 but will not be voting for him in 2024.

As far as the Iowa caucuses, I was not surprised at all. The polls have been showing that Donald Trump had the lead since the beginning, even though he’s got over 90 criminal charges and is knee-deep in investigations. I really don’t think there’s anything we can do about him this point.

Who would I vote for in a Trump-Biden election? That’s the million dollar question. I do not know what I’m going to do, because I’m not voting for Trump. He lies, and I just think that he’s only about himself and it’s not about America.

But I also cannot bring myself to vote for Joe Biden, morally and ethically, based off of what I see happening in Palestine. I’ve never been the type of person to be like “I’m staying home. I’m not voting”, but I’m really at an impasse.

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Hunter Clark

Hunter prefers Nikki Haley but thinks his primary vote will not make any difference. He now feels more inclined to back independent candidate Robert F Kennedy Jr – who he calls “insane” – over Donald Trump, who he cannot trust, and Joe Biden, who he worries is in mental decline.

It’s interesting to see, from the American mainstream media perspective, how much they were propping up Nikki Haley like she had incredible odds. No one ever had a chance of winning except for Donald Trump.

That moment happened when Mr Trump got all these indictments. I saw it first-hand; once Mr Trump was indicted on everything, everybody coalesced behind him. I think he’s bad for the country and bad for the party, but it’s what I expected.

You see it in some of the rhetoric that’s being used – people are kind of looking at him as an incumbent as far as the primary goes. The indictments just coalesced complete support behind him. I was hearing people say I’m tired of Donald Trump every day in the Republican Party. But as soon as those indictments happened, it was “we all stand behind Trump” because this is “illegitimate”.

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Related Topics

  • Iowa caucuses
  • US election 2024

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