The 2024 presidential candidate told supporters in Muscadine that he wanted caucus sites in Southwest Florida.
“But I do know with so many people that go down in Florida, I have to figure out — I may petition the Iowa Republican Party to have some caucus sites in Southwest Florida,” the Governor quipped.
“So people could just go, I mean, do one in Naples, one in Marco Island. You know, whatever you need to do.”
The Governor’s trial balloon was included as part of a very familiar riff about how happy Iowans are with the conservative governance of his key endorser, Kim Reynolds and how his children are looking forward to “seeing snow” in an early voting state.
“I know it gets cold here because all I have to do is as we get into December and January, if I want to talk to people from Iowa or Illinois or Wisconsin, I just go to Marco Island and Naples and Bonita Springs and Fort Myers and I got half the Midwest down there,” the Governor quipped.
The Iowa caucuses, of course, are community participation models, different from primaries given that voters show up to sites around the state and attempt to convince others to support their candidate. While a primary might lend itself to absentee balloting, it’s unclear how gaming the system for voters who prefer Florida’s temperate winters to being in states where they are registered to vote would actually work.
It’s also unclear how those elections would be made secure in a way that accords with Iowa law. DeSantis has been an exponent of so-called election security for years, but if this proposal came to pass, it seems ripe for potential exploitation and subversion.