Climate activists disrupted former President Donald Trump's campaign rally in Indianola, Iowa on Sunday. Demonstrators chanted “Trump, climate criminal” and a young woman held a banner with the same words. Trump supporters in the hall chanted “USA, USA” while security guards escorted the activists away.
The Republican presidential primary begins Monday in Iowa. According to polls, Trump is the clear favorite for the nomination to challenge incumbent Joe Biden in the November election. Former US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are his strongest rivals within the party.
When climate activists were picked up in Indianola, Trump told one activist he was “young and immature.” “They're fighting against oil,” Trump said. “They're basically saying, let's shut down our country.” Trump has long cast doubt on the scientific consensus on humans' role in climate change. One of his first official acts as president was the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015. If re-elected, he wants to increase production of fossil fuels.
Just before the primary, Iowa was hit by a violent winter storm with heavy snow, high winds and sub-zero temperatures. The Republican presidential candidates had to cancel several events because of this. Temperatures are forecast to feel below minus 30 degrees on Monday.
“Dress warm tomorrow,” Trump told supporters in Indianola. “Brave the weather to save America.”
Republicans vote in primaries in the agricultural state of the Midwestern United States in the traditional format of caucuses, in which party members gather in schools, churches, sports halls or living rooms. President Biden's Democrats are voting in Iowa for the first time in a weeks-long mail-in process. In their case, Biden was practically confirmed as a presidential candidate; He has no serious rivals.