Donald Trump supporters explain why ex-President is still so popular ahead of crucial vote

Former US President Donald Trump's re-election hopes are set for a major boost in the coming days.

Despite multiple criminal investigations and upcoming trials, Trump is almost certain to win the first vote in Iowa to be the Republican Party's nominee for President.

Bull riding is all about grit, determination, strength and holding on for dear life - and in Iowa, that's how they like their politicians and their presidents too.

On Monday night, US time, Republicans will begin choosing their party's nominee to run for the White House.

Polls show they've made up their minds, and they want Donald Trump back.

"Economy was great when he was in power, I love that," one rodeo attendee told Newshub.

"The results are what I think people are starting to realize might matter more than whether somebody's likable on camera," another said.

Trump's appeal is reaching far wider than just America's midwest. In recent surveys, he's beating President Joe Biden in crucial battleground states that could see him re-elected.

During our time here, several voters have told us their lives were much better when Trump was in office.

"I think everybody could use a mean tweet and some cheap gas," one said.

Biden and the Democrats are doing their best to see off any red wave - by reminding voters about Trump's role in the January 6 Capitol Riots and the 91 criminal charges ahead of him.

At times it seems like Trump is the bronco that keeps on bucking - refusing to go down. But his biggest challenge is still ahead of him.

He has four criminal trials this year, scheduled before November's election.

"I think a lot of them are kind of made-up charges," one person told Newshub.

"It just all comes down to how much you can make up, how many lies you can make up about somebody to put them on the wrong side of the track," another said.

Trump is promising to launch a tidal wave of change if he's elected.

Reporting suggests that includes expanding his Presidential powers, seeking revenge on political enemies and launching an all-out assault on immigration by deporting millions of migrants.

"They're poisoning the blood of our country. That's what they've done," he said at a recent event.

While Democrats think Donald Trump is the rodeo clown, Republicans want him back in the saddle - hoping he can fight his way to the finish line.