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The Latest On GOP Candidate Race Iowa


Morning Edition host David Greene is part of the NPR team in Iowa. He joins us now from Des Moines. Good morning, David.

DAVID GREENE, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel. You got duck calls on your show...

MARTIN: ...I know...

GREENE: ...We just need to pack up. There's no way we can beat that.

MARTIN: We should just end here because that was amazing.

GREENE: Exactly (laughter).

MARTIN: All right, so you're there. You're talking with folks. What are they telling you?

GREENE: You know, it's funny. You listen to Marco Rubio there saying that people have a right to be angry. He is trying to connect with people, I think, who are feeling really, really angry. I mean, you listen to it - and I guess I came here knowing that but not really understanding the depth of it. There are people who just feel like the country is in a bad place. And they're also fearful. I mean, they've seen these mass shootings, and they just wonder if their families are safe. And they listened to President Obama respond to some of these mass shootings, you know, talking about tighter gun restrictions. And they - many people say that was sort of a smack in the face to them. That was not the soothing and the reassurance that they were looking for. And so there's fear and there's anger.

MARTIN: So what does that mean for who they're going to turn out for? I mean, we've heard - we've been talking about the fact that Donald Trump is in the lead, but not by double digits. Ted Cruz generally comes in at number two. Are those the two candidates that really are animating the folks that you're talking to?

GREENE: Yeah. I mean, you know, Trump - you listen to people, understand why he has this lead. He has a lot of people who are really, really passionate about him. And they feel like he speaks like they do. I talked to a woman who owns a bar. She was making a burger for me in her kitchen, and she said you've got to get out of my way. Get out of my way here. You're in my way in my kitchen. She said you know what? Donald Trump talks like that.

MARTIN: (Laughter).

GREENE: He talks like me. But he's also winning over people who you would have expected maybe to vote like - for someone like Ted Cruz. You know, religious conservatives. And we'll see if that support stays when people actually go out to caucus.

MARTIN: OK. That is, of course, David Greene in Iowa to cover tomorrow's caucuses. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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