Donald Trump has received backlash for his recent comments about voters and the freezing Iowa weather. The former president joked that his supporters should push through the weather and vote because “even if you vote and then pass away, it’s worth it.”
‘Life-threatening’ caucus weather
The National Weather Service forecasted potentially “life-threatening” weather on and around Iowa’s caucus day. The service warned that temperatures could drop as low as -40 degrees in some areas, with wind chills that could “cause frostbite to occur in as little as 10 minutes.”
Extreme weather debate
There was much discussion among voters and Republican candidates about how the extreme weather may affect the caucus. Among those commenting on the bitter conditions was Trump, who caused a stir with his controversial message to voters.
Vote at all costs, says Trump
“You can’t sit home. If you’re sick as a dog, you say, ‘Darling, I gotta make it,’” the former president joked during an Indianola rally. “Even if you vote and then pass away, it’s worth it, remember.” While some Trump supporters appreciated the humor in the Republican’s comment, others felt it was distasteful and offensive.
A controversial comment
CNN anchor Kaitlan Collins posted the president’s controversial remarks on X, in a post reading, “Donald Trump as Iowa experiences subzero temperatures ahead of the caucuses: ‘You can’t sit home. If you’re sick as a dog, you say “Darling, I gotta make it.” Even if you vote and then pass away, it’s worth it, remember.’” The post garnered over 2.8 million views and sparked a heated discussion in the reply section.
X fights back
Political commentator Sundae Divine appeared to be unimpressed with the ex-president’s joke, commenting, “Leaving your family with Donald Trump after you die is worse than sticking them with a timeshare.”
Republicans criticize Trump
Anti-Trump Republican Unfiltered Boss responded by tweeting, “Trump be like:” alongside a Shrek GIF that read, “Some of you may die, but it’s a sacrifice I am willing to make.”
Committed Trump supporters
Trump made further comments on Iowa’s caucus weather in a video posted on X. “You have the worst weather, I guess, in recorded history,” said the former president. “But maybe that’s good, because our people are more committed than anybody else – so maybe it’s actually a good thing for us.”
Loomer’s conspiracy jokes
Laura Loomer, an outspoken Trump supporter, also took the opportunity to joke about the weather. “Is the Deep State activating HAARP to disrupt the Iowa Caucus? We all know @NikkiHaley has a lot of friends in the defense industry and Military industrial complex,” tweeted the journalist.
Deep State rigging caucus?
“She’s losing in Iowa, and now Iowa is set to get hit with a ONCE IN A DECADE blizzard as Donald Trump is set to dominate the Iowa Caucus,” Loomer continued. “Is the Deep State using HAARP to rig the Iowa Caucus? Looks like weather manipulation to me.”
Weather may benefit DeSantis
Chuck Todd, a political analyst for NBC News, speculated that the conditions may actually be most beneficial for Ron DeSantis. “Donald Trump has benefitted from big turnouts. The higher the turnout has been in general elections…the more Trump voters have come,” said Todd. “So, is there a complacency issue that Trump has to worry about?… It should be a real advantage for Ron DeSantis.”
DeSantis set up for success
“This is why you build an organization, is when the weather drops unexpectedly: are you going to get your people out? So in theory, I think this is all setting up really well right now for Ron DeSantis,” the analyst continued.
Haley and DeSantis at a disadvantage?
On the other hand, The Lincoln Project adviser Tara Setmayer agreed with Trump’s implication that the ex-president’s supporters would be most likely to brave the cold. “This time around, I think, if I were Nikki Haley or Ron DeSantis, I would be cursing the weather gods, because they’ve worked very hard to get people enthusiastic enough to get out and caucus,” she said on MSNBC.
Enthusiastic Trump fans
“It’s already a serious time commitment to go and caucus, it’s not like you just go in and cast your ballot, it takes several hours, it’s a whole thing…” she continued. “But the people who are the most engaged, the most enthusiastic are the ones who will brave the weather to go do this, and that’s clearly Trump supporters.”