- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 30, 2016

DUBUQUE, Iowa | Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump landed here Saturday in his personal jumbo jet for a final campaign blitz before the country’s leadoff nominating contest, urging voters to brave any hardship or possibly snow to go to caucuses in two days.

Caught in a tight race with Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Mr. Trump warned the crowd of several hundred in an airplane hangar at Dubuque Regional Airport that he’s depending on turnout to secure victory in the Hawkeye State and put him on a fast track to the nomination.

“If we can win in Iowa — everyones talking about it — we can run the table. It’s never been done before,” he said, standing in front his Boeing 757 emblazoned with his last name.

The success of Mr. Trump’s run in Iowa depends on his ability to get an army of supporters to go to their first caucus, which unlike voting in primaries requires people to attend meetings for an hour or more in the evening.

He acknowledged that turnout could be impacted by the weather, with a possibility of snow in the forecast for Monday, though the brunt of the storm is expected to hold off until Tuesday.

“If it snows on Monday, you go through the snow. You’re from Iowa,” he said to laughs and applause from the crowd.

Mr. Trump enjoys big leads in national polls and every other early-voting state. A win in Iowa, which is the only state where the race is close, could give him unstoppable momentum toward the nomination.

He noted that the state’s Republican caucus hasn’t picked the eventual nominee in 16 years, adding that this year was their chance to break that losing streak.

“We have a movement,” he said of the huge crowds at his events, though the crowd at the airport was smaller usual. “You have to get out and caucus. We have a chance to do something so historic.”

As a treat for children at the rally, Mr. Trump invited them to come up and “run though the plan.”

He pulled a similar stunt earlier in the campaign letting children at an Trump event go on rides in his personal helicopter.

Mr. Trump has seven rallies scheduled across the state through Monday.

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