DeSantis Privately Indicates He’s Taking on Trump in 2024: Report
Ron DeSantis has all but said he’s running for the Republican nomination for president in 2024. The Washington Post reported on Thursday that he actually has said it, just not publicly.
The Florida governor is heading to Davenport, Iowa, on Friday, which is just as strong of an indication he intends to run as the Post‘s report. He’ll head to Nevada on Saturday, where already-declared candidate Nikki Haley just held a town hall. DeSantis traveled beyond Florida’s borders ahead of last year’s midterms, as well, rallying for Doug Mastriano in Pennsylvania and J.D. Vance in Ohio.
The Post notes that though DeSantis appears to have made up his mind, he isn’t likely to formally announce his candidacy until after the Florida legislative session ends in May.
DeSantis certainly has plenty of support. He’s long been siphoning donors from from President Donald Trump, and on Thursday former Trump official Ken Cuccinelli launched a new political action committee while calling for DeSantis to run.
“I have been speaking to many grassroots conservative activists around the country who are very enthusiastic for Governor DeSantis to run for president in 2024,” Cuccinelli said in a statement. “The energy is there, grassroots conservatives see the governor as a leader and a fighter with a winning conservative track record who will lead the Republican Party to victory in 2024. Based on those conversations, I am most confident that we will build an unmatched grassroots political army for Governor DeSantis to help carry him to the White House.”
Trump has been leading in polls of a still-hypothetical matchup between him and DeSantis, but he’s clearly scared the governor could dethrone him atop the party. The former president has been attacking DeSantis relentlessly for weeks, suggesting he’s a Jeb Bush-loving globalist RINO who wants to cut Medicare and Social Security. He’s also suggested DeSantis is a pedophile.
Trump’s latest attack came Thursday night. “Why on earth (farmer’s love earth!) would the wonderful people of the GREAT State of Iowa vote for Ron DeSanctimonious when he voted and fought to KILL Ethanol (and will definitely do so if given the chance), voted 4 times, as a disciple of Paul Ryan, to decimate Social Security and MediCare, and bring the minimum age on Social Security to at least 70 years old (he wanted higher!),” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “He will be in Iowa on Friday to beg for mercy. I supported Ethanol, FIRED NAFTA, & made USMCA & China Trade Deals!”
Trump will stop through shortly after DeSantis leaves for Nevada. A recent Des Moines Register poll found the two GOP heavyweights might be close to neck-and-neck, with each pulling in a favorability rating of just over 40 percent.
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