Iowa caucuses

NBC10 in Iowa: Candidates Setting Lofty Expectations as Caucuses Near

The Iowa Caucuses are tonight, kicking off the presidential primary season. NBC10's political reporter, Lauren Mayk, is in the Midwest state filing updates. Here is her fourth

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On the eve of the Iowa caucuses, some candidates set high expectations for their presidential campaigns. 

“We are now just one day away from victory in the Iowa caucuses,” former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg told a crowd in Des Moines.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) also told a crowd Sunday that he looked forward to a victory when he returned to Iowa after a trip back to Washington for the impeachment trial.

Voters, still undecided about who to support in Monday night’s caucus, are also trekking from event to event as they try to make up their minds. 

Meanwhile, supporters are also setting expectations for the campaigns they are endorsing. NBC10 spoke with several supporters of former Vice President Joe Biden, who entered the race for the democratic nomination as the front runner and is now — along with the rest of the field — facing his first test with voters.

“He has to be close at the top,” said former Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), a longtime friend and former colleague of Biden who stopped at a Biden field office Sunday.

Nelson said Biden should be in the top three in Iowa and New Hampshire and then predicted he would “blow the doors off in South Carolina.”

Other Biden supporters are also taking a longer-term view of how to judge his success, rather than focusing on Iowa.

“He doesn’t have to win it,” said Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-PA), who was also in Iowa campaigning for Biden. “Demographically, both Iowa and New Hampshire really match up for either Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders - so Biden doesn’t need to win here but he does need to do well.”

Senator Chris Coons (D-DE), part of the Delaware congressional delegation who showed up in the Hawkeye state for Biden, pointed to the combination of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina for a “clearer picture” of who the strongest candidates are going into Super Tuesday.

Coons said he’s confident Biden will be first or second among those candidates.

NBC10 Reporter Lauren Mayk is on the ground in Iowa ahead of the state's caucuses. See more of her reports from the ground here:

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