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Haley, DeSantis head to Iowa even as RNC warns hopefuls against attending Christian group’s forum

Washington, Nov 11 (IANS) Former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who have upped their ratings after the GOP’s third debate in Florida, have now headed towards the Iowa caucus even as the Republican National Committee (RNC) has warned all presidential hopefuls that they would be banned from their future debates if they participate in an Iowa forum hosted by a Christian organisation.

Several presidential candidates have been invited by the Family Leader Foundation to participate in an event that will include a “moderated, friendly and open discussion”.

The RNC has threatened to disqualify GOP presidential candidates from debates if they participate in an Iowa forum hosted by a conservative Christian organization, media reports said .

The RNC issued the warning ahead of the Foundation’s Friday event that the group said will include White House hopefuls clubbed at a table for a “moderated, friendly and open discussion”.

The RNC reminded candidates they signed a pledge not to participate in debates like the one in Des Moines, which is not sanctioned by the national party, NBC said quoting a letter it obtained from the RNC.

“Any Republican presidential candidate who participates in this or other similar events will be deemed to have violated this pledge and will be disqualified from taking part in any future RNC-sanctioned presidential primary debates,” the October 28-dated letter said.

After the third debate clash, DeSantis and Haley turn back to the battle for Iowa. While it’s unclear ifHaley has confirmed , but DeSantis has. They are no doubt headed to Iowa to fulfill a calendar full of events planned by them in the state to swing the voter momentum in their favour.

Trump is still the front-runner in the GOP primaries with a clear lead over other candidates in Iowa also, but candidates hope to bridge the gap after the gains in the third debate where they came out swinging against the former president and spoke with greater clarity on foreign policy issues than they did in the previous two debates. They aspire for at least the second position.

A poll survey of local Republican leaders in Iowa evidences why Haley has been on the rise in the first caucus state — leaders and voters are impressed by her performance at the third GOP debate Wednesday night.

Meanwhile, the Foundation has invited Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former UNAmbassador Nikki Haley, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy and former President Donald Trump to participate in its forum. DeSantis confirmed Friday he’ll attend the group’s event. “I’m going to be there at The Family Leader, I think it’s an important part of this process,” he said. “I’ll be here no matter what happens, and so you guys can pencil me in for that,” he told reporters after a campaign event in Ames, Iowa.

Tricia McLaughlin, a spokesperson for the Ramaswamy campaign, told NBC News in a statement that the campaign is “hopeful that RNC and the Family Leader will be able to work out their logistical issues to best serve the voters.” Tim Scott and Nikki Haley have not confirmed their participation.

Trump will definitely skip the event as a spokesperson for the group told NBC News that Bob Vander Plaats, the group’s CEO, has been openly critical of the former President.



Indian Abroad News Desk
Indian Abroad News Desk
Indian Abroad is a news channel and fortnightly newspaper meant for Australia’s Indian community and, besides news, focuses on lifestyle subjects like health, travel, culture, arts, beauty, fashion, entertainment, Bollywood, etc. Our YouTube channel here features daily news bulletins besides infotainment videos on lifestyle subjects.

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