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Two Utahns go to Iowa to support their candidate in caucuses

Two Utahns go to Iowa to support their candidate in caucuses



Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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DES MOINES -- Talk about dedication to a candidate. Campaigns consume huge amounts of energy and time. Two Utahans are among the thousands of staffers who put their lives on hold for their candidates in the Iowa caucuses, the first official test of the Republicans who want to take on President Obama.

On the final day before the Iowa caucuses, Mitt Romney crisscrossed the state. Supporters packed in to this event in Cedar Rapids, mid-afternoon. Romney asked them point blank for their help.

"You guys, I need you tomorrow night," Romney said. "I need every single vote in this room. And I need you to get a couple from your neighborhood. We're going to have a great showing in Cedar Rapids."

It's a full-time job to make Romney's plea translate into votes. Idaho and Utah native Jacob Fullmer is working on the campaign nitty-gritty 90 miles from Cedar Rapids in Des Moines. He said he has deep rooted conviction about his candidate

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"I think that Mitt is a very down to earth guy. Sure, I can relate to his faith, but that's not the reason I support him. I think Mitt is the guy to get done what we need to get done," Fullmer said.

The issue of faith has edged its way into the campaign. Rick Santorum, Michelle Bachmann, and Newt Gringrich have prayed at some campaign rallies. But for Sandy native Daniel Hermansen, there is deep conviction about Ron Paul as his candidate.

Putting college on hold, Hermansen traveled to Iowa during the holidays and volunteered his time. He is among the throngs of young people on the Paul bandwagon. "Ron Paul talks about this all the time, you know. It's simply a feeling. A message of freedom, the message of individual liberty: I am the dictate of my own affairs," Hermansen said.

Paul is currently second to Romney in most polls. He got a rousing welcome this morning in Des Moines, rejecting those who claim he can't beat President Obama.


For Hermansen the Ron Paul supporter, and Fullmer, the Romney loyalist, this is more than politics as usual. Both say their candidate has something America needs.

"The most important thing is to recognize the problem and then find the solution," Paul said. "Now, is the solution complicated? Not really. The solution is just looking to our traditions."

For Hermansen the Ron Paul supporter, and Fullmer, the Romney loyalist, this is more than politics as usual. Both say their candidate has something America needs.

"When I consider where our country is, and the state of the economy, there's no one else I'd rather see in the white house," Fullmer said.

There is one Republican you won't see in Iowa at tomorrow's caucus. Former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman is keeping his focus on New Hampshire which hosts its primary next week. He says New Hampshire sends a message to the country about which candidate is the most electable.

You have to lay out your assets and your resources and states where you think you can do best. This is a state that likes to reward underdogs. I'm an underdog in this race," Huntsman said.

Huntsman's poll numbers have gone up in New Hampshire in recent weeks, but Mitt Romney still holds a large lead in polls there.

Email: rpiatt@ksl.com

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Richard Piatt

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