Trump says he would beat DeSantis in potential 2024 primary


Former President Trump in a new interview said he would beat Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) if the two faced each other in the 2024 Republican presidential primary, but noted that he does not believe the governor will run against him.

“If I faced him, I’d beat him like I would beat everyone else,” Trump said during an interview with Yahoo Finance Live, set to be released on Monday.

However, the former president said he does not think he will face DeSantis in 2024, adding, “I think most people would drop out, I think he would drop out.”

Trump’s comments come as speculation is swirling regarding who will lead the GOP ticket in 2024.

A straw poll for the 2024 GOP presidential nominee taken at the Conservative Political Action Conference in July gave DeSantis high marks. 

When asked whom attendees would vote for in the Republican primary if it were held that day, 70 percent of respondents said Trump. DeSantis came in second with 21 percent of the vote.

When surveying respondents without Trump as an option, however, DeSantis topped the poll at 68 percent.

DeSantis, an ardent Trump supporter, is up for reelection in 2022. He told Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Thursday that he will run for governor again next year.

He also said he is “not considering anything beyond doing my job.”

A spokesperson for DeSantis told The Hill that the governor has been clear in his comments that “he’s focused on Florida and doing his job as the governor of our state.”

She also pointed to remarks DeSantis made last month in response to a question from a reporter in which he called speculation regarding a presidential bid “purely manufactured.”

“I just do my job. You know, we work hard, obviously, our state has led on a lot of things, including on this [monoclonal antibody treatment]. Now other states are copying us. But that’s what it’s really all about. Just helping folks here. I hear all this stuff and honestly, it’s nonsense. So, you know, I don’t really know what to say to rumors,” he added at the time.

Trump has still not announced if he plans to wage another run for the White House in 2024, though he has been publicly flirting with the idea since losing the last election. 

Trump told Hannity in July during an interview that he has made a decision about his plans for 2024. Last month, the former president said it was an “easy question” whether he will run again.

In August a Quinnipiac University poll found that 60 percent of adults nationwide felt that it would be bad for the country if Trump were to run for president in 2024.

Updated at 8:03 a.m.

Tags 2024 election 2024 Republicans COVID-19 response Donald Trump Florida Ron DeSantis Sean Hannity
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