The presidential run of Florida’s Governor, Ron DeSantis, in 2024 came under tight scrutiny when mainstream media declared the contest finished for a percentage of the vote that was, in his camp’s opinion, premature. ‘It’s unbelievable to witness the press playing such an active role in hampering the electoral process by prematurely declaring the race over, even before many Iowans got the chance to cast their votes,’ expressed Andrew Romeo, DeSantis campaign’s spokesperson, on a certain day.
Arguing that the press was heavily favoring Trump, Romeo offered this rushed resolution as the most glaring instance seen so far. Exactly at 8:31 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, The Associated Press proclaimed the race closed. Not far behind, CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News echoed the same prediction at around the same timeline. Just ahead of 9 p.m., even Decision Desk HQ joined in predicting Trump as the victor.
The official caucus meetings had started at 8 p.m., with differing durations scheduled across various venues in Iowa. A few results were expected within the first thirty minutes, while others were anticipated later during the night. This information was reported by The Des Moines Register.
At the moment Trump was projected as the winner, it was not clear who was coming in second, with Haley and DeSantis running a very close race. The Governor had been pouring substantial resources into the state ahead of Monday’s competition, which held the nation’s attention.
Everyone was anticipating a winning turn for Trump in the Iowa round. But DeSantis had not been idle; investing significant efforts and time into Iowa, touring each one of the 99 counties and even gaining the backing of Iowa’s Republican Governor, Kim Reynolds.
David Weigel, reporter for Semafor, remarked on the early prediction: ‘The results from the get-go point to a solid Trump win, but the hastiness of the network’s declaration raises eyebrows. A lot of caucus-goers still have their phones handy – envision how many may see this early call and decide to leave.’
Earlier that day, DeSantis firmly declared that he would press on with his campaign regardless of the outcome in Iowa — a contest where Trump always was the likely winner. To a question from an MSNBC reporter about his plans whether he would pull out of the competition either tonight or the day following, given any possible worse outcome than he projected, DeSantis responded with determination.
‘We’re pressing forward. We’re structured for the long game. It’s all about gathering the delegates,’ emphasized DeSantis. When prodded by the reporter whether his campaign was likely to back out in case of a third-place finish, DeSantis was unwavering: ‘We’re looking at the big picture. We’re in it for the long haul. We’re going to do well. I know the media likes to speculate, I’m looking forward to the vote count. That will be the real measure,’ DeSantis responded with certitude.
‘I’m confident that now is the time for everyone, be it Republican, Democrat, liberal, or conservative, to join forces. Just imagine if we unified to solve the world’s challenges and the saw through the issues causing anguish and devastation we’re witnessing unprecedentedly,’ he continued. ‘I want to present this as a significant part of our message. We’re all in this together.’
Donald Trump, the campaign’s winner as projected, commended DeSantis and also Nikki Haley for their spirited participation in the race. ‘They both had a great campaign. And to be honest, they both did commendably well. We still can’t confirm who’s got the second spot,’ Trump told his applauding supporters.
Trump also made a point to appreciate Vivek’s performance, which he deemed was extraordinary. Starting from absolute zero, Vivek had managed to achieve a considerable portion of the vote, speculated at about eight percent.
‘He’s achieved something spectacular. From absolute zero, he’s scooped up a sizable share, likely around eight percent, and that certainly is an immense achievement,’ Trump admitted, adding praise for the ‘intelligence and capabilities of the people involved in the race.’
Through this blend of anticipation, doubts, speculations, and projections, the Presidential Race of 2024, particularly the Iowa round, has been a showpiece of democratic process and political interplay, echoing the nation’s resounding voice for their preferred candidate, their future leader.