Ron DeSantis jabs Trump, says he would be a 'lame duck' president if elected


Republican U.S. presidential candidate and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis takes a questions from an audience member during the Never Back Down South Carolina Bus Tour at Revel Events Center in Greenville, South Carolina, October 4, 2023.

Alyssa Pointer | Reuters

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis went on the attack against Donald Trump in an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” saying the former president would be a “lame duck” if elected for a second term.

“He’s got limitations in terms of his electability,” DeSantis said Friday, referring to Trump, who is leading the governor and all other candidates for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination by a wide margin in polls.

“He would be a lame duck on day one if he could even get elected. DeSantis stated that Trump would be a lame duck on day one if he were to win the Republican presidential nomination in 2024. “He didn’t keep his promises, and he certainly did not deliver.” He said Trump had failed to “drain” the swamp — a reference made to Washington’s official institutions — and force Mexico to pay for a wall.

DeSantis also noted that Trump, instead of cutting the national debt, increased it by $7.8 trillion.

“We’re going to be able to make that case right and I’ve delivered on these policies better than anybody,” DeSantis said.

DeSantis currently lags behind Trump by around 40 points nationally in the average polling numbers of the Republican primary. DeSantis, when asked if the decline in his poll numbers was due to his fight with Disney, denied the claim.

“I don’t believe that’s the cause,” DeSantis replied.

He, along with other state officials, targeted Disney’s tax district after it spoke out against a controversial bill last year that restricted classroom discussion about LGBTQ+ issues.

Disney sued DeSantis in response, saying he had illegally retaliated against the government.

He argued Friday that it is “outrageous” for companies to get involved in education matters.

“It was an important fight to have and we won the fight decisively,” DeSantis said.

“But I would also point out, Disney had an obnoxious set of corporate welfare benefits. This is bad policy. DeSantis stated that Biden had used the budget reconciliation to accomplish his agenda.

“We are going to use this for our agenda.” We’re not flailing about, but we have a plan. “