Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker (D) said Monday he believes former President Trump’s roaring victory in the Iowa caucuses could actually be a bad sign for his campaign.
Media outlets called the race for Trump just minutes after caucuses began, and the former president ended up winning about 51 percent of the vote, within the margin of expected results from state polls. Despite the results, Pritzker, a Biden reelection campaign adviser, didn’t see Monday’s caucuses as a big Trump victory.
“Almost half of the base of the Republican Party showing up for this caucus tonight voted against Donald Trump. Think about that,” he said in an MSNBC interview.
“I think that is telling. It tells you the weakness of Donald Trump and also the opportunity for Democrats because in the end, look, if the base doesn’t turn out for Donald Trump in the general election enthusiastically and Democrats turn out its base, this is all about, you know, independents, and independents don’t like Donald Trump,” he continued.
Caucuses tend to draw the most die-hard supporters, Pritzker argued, and if about half of them won’t back Trump, it’s a good sign for Biden.
Former President Trump arrives on stage during a campaign event at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, on Jan. 14, 2024. Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Despite the sentiment, Trump has looked strong in polls of GOP voters. A strong majority see him as the best candidate in the party’s field, and he has dominated national primary polling. He has a 53-point lead over his rivals in The Hill/Decision Desk HQ average of national polls.
But among moderates and independents, Biden and the former president are neck and neck, setting up a potential nail-biter for the 2024 election.
The Biden campaign has attempted to shift focus to Trump so far in the race, boosting the president as the only viable alternative to a second Trump term and the consequences it could bring.
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