DeSantis edges Haley for second place finish in Iowa, behind Trump’s historic caucus win

The Fox News Decision Desk projects that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will take second place in the Iowa caucuses.

DeSantis will trail former President Donald Trump by a significant margin, but coming in second may give his campaign a much-needed boost.

DeSantis has edged former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, who comes in third, as he tries to make the case that he is the true alternative candidate to Trump in the race for the Republican presidential nomination.

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Republican presidential candidates Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis. (Getty Images)

Haley will look to regain support in New Hampshire ahead of its primary next week.

Vivek Ramaswamy placed fourth, and announced he would be suspending his campaign.

The contest between Haley and DeSantis quickly heated up between the two Southern conservatives after entrepreneur Ramaswamy’s rise in the polls fizzled following the first presidential debate. Haley and DeSantis continued to battle in Iowa and elsewhere to convince voters it was a two-candidate race between them and Trump.

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Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy

Vivek Ramaswamy, chairman and co-founder of Strive Asset Management and 2024 Republican presidential candidate, speaks during a campaign event in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2024. (Christian Monterrosa/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

It’s unclear what Haley’s path to victory will be considering Trump’s commanding lead in the upcoming New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries, although recent polls suggest she stands in a distant second place in both contests ahead of DeSantis.

Ahead of the Fox News Decision Desk second-place call, the DeSantis campaign indicated to Fox News Digital in a statement that the former governor would be pushing ahead in the race for the GOP nomination.

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“They threw everything at Ron DeSantis. They couldn’t kill him. He is not only still standing, but he’s now earned his ticket out of Iowa. This is going to be a long battle ahead, but that is what this campaign is built for. The stakes are too high for this nation, and we will not back down,” a senior DeSantis campaign official said.

Get the latest updates from the 2024 campaign trail, exclusive interviews and more at our Fox News Digital election hub.

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