ORANGE CITY, Iowa—Former President Donald Trump remains hugely popular here in Sioux County, where he won 81.8% of November’s vote. But as other Republicans lay the groundwork for potential presidential bids, the area’s GOP voters appear open to hearing them out.
This area in the state that traditionally starts the nomination race is deeply religious and tops the nation for the proportion of residents of Dutch ancestry. Interviews with more than two dozen voters, including several who remain convinced Mr. Trump won the election, show a willingness to move on.
“Many of his policies were positive for the country, but his personality has gotten in the way,” said Tom Van Den Bosch, a retired high-school guidance counselor who twice voted for Mr. Trump. “I would like him to stay in a background role and let others with the right value system run.”
Mr. Van Den Bosch said he thinks Republicans need to consider nominating a woman or a minority candidate in 2024 to show that it isn’t just a white-male party. He is intrigued by Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, who is Black, and Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota.
Sioux County, a rural area with several small cities in northwest Iowa, helped power wins in the Iowa caucuses for former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee in 2008, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum in 2012 and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas in 2016. All three won the county, though none went on to win the GOP presidential nomination.
Source: WSJ – US News