Haley stumps in Cedar Falls as temperatures continue to drop

Nikki Haley greets the crowd at Second State Brewery in Cedar Falls on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2024. (Photos by Amie Rivers for Iowa Starting Line.)

By Amie Rivers

January 13, 2024

Nikki Haley played up the brutally cold weather conditions and general campaign fatigue during an in-person event Saturday morning in downtown Cedar Falls as the Iowa caucus continues to wind down.

“Two days ’til caucus,” Haley, who is campaigning for the top of the Republican presidential ticket, told an overflow crowd packed into Second State Brewery to cheers. “I know why you’re excited: In two days, no more commercials, no more mail, no more text messages.”

The former South Carolina governor also alluded to the single-digit temperatures that morning. With the wind chill, temperatures were as low as -17 degrees as of 10:30 a.m.

“I love that you came out in the cold,” she said. “There’s one thing I know for sure: I am not in South Carolina anymore.”

Haley said she thought it was cold campaigning in the state “in October or November,” and noted Iowans “laughed” at that notion then.

“They go, ‘Oh, this is mild,’ and I was like, ‘No, it’s cold,'” she said, to laughter. “I get it now, I totally get it now.”

Other than those comments, her campaign speech was roughly the same points she’s previously made on the campaign trail.

As President, Haley said she would tackle the “hundreds of billions of dollars” in fraud from COVID-era unemployment insurance programs (the US Department of Labor has been working on this already), veto “any spending bill that doesn’t take us back to pre-COVID levels,” send “as many federal programs as we can” to the states, “eliminate federal gas and diesel tax,” and make small business tax cuts “permanent” like corporate tax cuts to help the “middle class.”

Former President Donald Trump is widely expected to win the Iowa Republican Caucus, but Haley hopes for a better showing than Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. That plus strong showings in upcoming New Hampshire and her home state of South Carolina, which goes third in the nominating process, will position her as the Trump alternative.

  • Amie Rivers

    Amie Rivers is Starting Line's community editor, labor reporter and newsletter snarker-in-chief. Previously, she was an award-winning journalist at the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier; now, she very much enjoys making TikToks and memes. Send all story tips and pet photos to [email protected] and sign up for our newsletter here.

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