After formally making his presidential campaign announcement on Monday, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will leave his home state for four states that feature early nominating contests for the Republican Party.
Walker's team announced the governor will leave Waukesha for Las Vegas, Nev., before heading to South Carolina and New Hampshire later in the week. The governor will spend three days in Iowa next weekend as he pursues a 99-county tour of Iowa in coming months, which his team has dubbed the "Full Grassley," named after Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley.
He will join a host of other GOP presidential candidates at the Family Leader's annual summit on Saturday, July 18, in Ames as he works to court evangelical voters who are prevalent in Iowa. Earlier this year, Family Leader CEO Bob Vander Plaats told the Washington Examiner he expects to make an endorsement around Thanksgiving, but he had his eye on former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. All three candidates will attend the summit, as will retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
Walker, the son of a Baptist minister, has impressed evangelical Christian voters elsewhere on the nascent campaign trail. Walker spoke at the Faith and Freedom Coalition's annual conference in Washington, D.C., last month and dined together with Ralph Reed, the coalition's president, at the "Patriot Gala." Walker trails only former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, according to RealClearPolitics' average of polls, and likely hopes his announcement gives him momentum to put him on top of the increasingly crowded field.