Trump Throws More Jabs at DeSantis During West Palm Beach Rally
Former President Donal Trump took several shots at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis During a Presidents Day Rally at West Palm Beach, again referring to him as “Ron DeSanctimonious.”
Speaking to a very pro-DeSantis audience but hosted by the pro-Trump Club 45, Trump had to walk a fine line with his rhetoric toward the governor.
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During the rally, Trump first brought up the “DeSanctimonious” nickname as part of a dig at the smaller size of DeSantis’s crowd. DeSantis stopped at Staten Island as part of a more extensive tour advocating for law and order.
“Ron DeSanctimonious had a crowd in Staten Island, 139 people in Staten Island. We got a lot of people. … We got a lot of people here, but I always say hit your enemy a little bit early. Some people say don’t but I say do.”
The latter half of Trump’s comment is not aimed at DeSantis but at a growing chorus of observers who argue that Trump’s targeting of DeSantis is premature and a bad strategic move. Trump is aware of the notes but appears undeterred.
I don’t think Trump needs to attack DeSantis. Nor should he. Makes DeSantis look like the presumptive nominee, when Trump clearly is. Trump and DeSantis ought to be making an alliance which is the best way to achieve both of their ambitions. Also best for the GOP and the country!
— Dinesh D'Souza (@DineshDSouza) February 21, 2023
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According to the Sun Sentinel, the audience response to the “DeSanctimonious” barb was muted, and Trump moved on quickly.
Trump then touted his larger numbers than DeSantis again, this time regarding votes. This isn’t a new argument for the former President; he has repeatedly mentioned he got more votes in Florida during the 2020 presidential race than DeSantis did during his governor’s race.
“And this state is so incredible and I never mention this because I don’t like hitting Republicans. I really don’t but I did get 1.2 million more votes than Ron, 1.2 million more votes. … I got 1.2 million votes more than Ron and Ron did good in Florida, but I did great.”
Trump promised to end Biden’s practice of “Marxist diversity, equity and inclusion czars in every agency” and to rid the government of “left-wing gender theories” on his first day in office.
“We’re going to get this ideology right out of our government.”
Trump also leaned into public school regulations, an issue DeSantis has proven is popular with Florida Republicans.
“You’ll elect your school principal. How about that one?….some of these school principals are put in there for political reasons, and they’re seriously radical left lunatics.”
The former President was even blunter in a Tuesday Truth Social post, arguing that good weather in Florida and bad blue-state governance explain the mass migration to Florida: not DeSantis policies. Trump even nodded to Charlie Crist’s numbers to make the point.
“Florida was doing GREAT long before Ron DeSanctus got there. People are fleeing from New York to Florida (and other places) because of high TAXES and out of control CRIME, not because of Governor (Thank you President Trump!) DeSanctimonious. Rick Scott did great, and even Charlie Crist had very good numbers. SUNSHINE AND OCEAN, very alluring!!!”
🚨President Trump releases new statement on Governor DeSantis. pic.twitter.com/5ZYbAAxhyj
— The Calvin Coolidge Project (@TheCalvinCooli1) February 21, 2023
At the time of writing, DeSantis has not responded to this most recent volley of Trump’s attacks.
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