- por ding
- BBC News – Washington
Former US President Donald Trump has criticized Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, calling him a “normal” politician.
De Santis, 44, rose to prominence after being re-elected in the midterm elections on Tuesday, making him a clear challenger to Trump, who is expected to seek the next presidential election.
Earlier, Trump warned Florida governor against running for president in 2024.
On Thursday evening, Trump criticized DeSantis in a lengthy statement, calling him a lightweight politician who came to him “in a desperate situation” when he first ran for governor in 2017.
“Ron had low popularity, bad polls, he didn’t have the money, but he told me if you support him, he can win,” Trump said. “I also fixed his campaign that broke down completely.”
In his criticism, he added that de Santis was “cheating” by refusing to rule out a presidential bid in 2024, and warned him that he would suffer a defeat if he did.
Trump is widely expected to announce his intention to run for president again.
Despite this, the midterm elections, in which Republicans failed to muster an overwhelming majority in the House of Representatives, contrary to what they expected, and are still unable to determine whether they will achieve a majority in the Senate, left many in the party to blame Trump for it.
Voters have largely refused to support candidates who supported Trump’s unsubstantiated allegations of rigging in the 2020 presidential election, and many prominent candidates that Trump has backed have struggled to hold their positions or suffer significant losses.
Even the former president’s close allies have called on him to reconsider his talk of an important November 15 announcement.
“Republicans have followed Donald Trump down a slope,” David Urban, a former Trump adviser, told the New York Times.
“I think he (Trump) needs to pause (his campaign announcement),” Kayleigh McEnany, Trump’s former press secretary, told Fox News.
By contrast, De Santis’ victory by 20 points over his Democratic challenger, Charlie Crist, cemented his standing as a potential presidential candidate.
His victory in Miami-Dade County, in particular, which is one of Florida’s largest and has traditionally been won by Democrats, was the biggest for Republicans in four decades.
In 2016, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won by 29 percentage points. On Tuesday, de Santis won 55 percent of the vote there.
According to an Espos poll in October, 72 percent of Republicans said De Santis should have a significant amount of influence on the party’s future, compared to 64 percent who said the same about Trump, 76 .
The Florida governor has yet to respond to Trump’s mockery of him on Thursday.