Nikki Haley and Joni Ernst. (Haley Twitter photo)

The pace of presidential campaigning in Iowa is accelerating, with former President Donald Trump due in Davenport Monday and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis there today.

DeSantis shared the stage with Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds. DeSantis touted how he and Reynolds responded to the pandemic by banning mask mandates and reopening schools. “Minnesota — they were fleeing lockdowns to come to Sarasota and Naples and these places, but when I meet Iowans in Florida, they’re happy,” DeSantis said, to laughter and applause. “They love their state because it’s well run.”

A large crowd cheered DeSantis as he listed several bills he’s signed into law, including one that dissolves a special taxing district for Walt Disney World that gave the Disney Company authority over things like roads, water systems, garbage collection on the property.

“Disney no longer controls its own government in Florida. There’s a new sheriff in town,” DeSantis said, to cheers.

DeSantis is here to promote his new book and is expected to enter the GOP’s 2024 presidential race later this year. He and Reynolds will make another appearance together early this evening in Des Moines.

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst hosted an event in Clive today with former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley focused on foreign policy. Haley was appointed by Trump to be U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. She’s on her second tour around Iowa after launching her presidential campaign in February.

“The United Nations, it’s a farce. I mean, that’s the first thing I’ll say,” Haley said as the crowd applauded and Ernst laughed. “The United Nations is not for the faint at heart. Every day, you know, it felt like I was putting on body armor because you knew you’d have a fight — you just didn’t know which country you were fighting that day.”

During a discussion of the war in Ukraine, a man in the audience yelled that Ukraine is not our ally and he was done with the Republican Party if it’s the war party. Haley responded.

“What I’ll tell you is we have no better ally at the United Nations than Ukraine,” Haley said. “There wasn’t one thing we voted for that they weren’t there. There wasn’t thing I fought that they weren’t standing beside us. There wasn’t any time that I had to ask Ukraine for anything. They were always there.”

Haley told the crowd winning the war in Ukraine sends an important message to adversaries like Russia and China and will prevent a world war. The man who raised the issue then left.

Trump’s event in Davenport Monday is his first event in Iowa since announcing he would run again for president. The Iowa Republican Party’s first in the nation Caucuses are less than a year away.

Radio Iowa