Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis denied claims and rumors suggesting he would run for president in 2024 and said he’s focused on performing his duties as governor of Florida.
“All the speculation about me is purely manufactured,” said DeSantis during a press conference in St. Cloud, Florida, on Tuesday. “I just do my job and we work hard … I hear all this stuff and honestly it’s nonsense.”
For months now, speculation has mounted that DeSantis, a Republican, would make a run for the presidency if former President Donald Trump doesn’t enter the race. Trump himself suggested earlier this year that he could choose DeSantis, whom he promoted during his 2018 gubernatorial campaign, as his running mate if he decides to for a 2024 bid.
DeSantis’s comments come just days before he is scheduled to headline an event in Nebraska with several other potential GOP presidential candidates, including former Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
Trump, meanwhile, has not publicly said whether he would run for president again, citing campaign finance laws. But in recent days, advisers to the former commander-in-chief suggested that he would, while Trump also sent out an email to supporters last week with polls that show he would lead the Republican field of candidates by a significant margin.
“I would say somewhere between 99 and 100 percent,” adviser Jason Miller, who is also the CEO of social media website Gettr, said in an interview several days ago about Trump’s presidential prospects. “I think he is definitely running in 2024.”
But when speaking to Politico, Miller said that the former president hasn’t made a final decision.
“President Trump doesn’t do misdirection, he wears it on his sleeve,” he explained.
And the reason why Trump hasn’t declared his candidacy, Trump told Fox Business earlier this year, is because of federal campaign finance laws.
“The campaign finance laws, which are antiquated and stupid, OK? Stupid and corrupt in a way. They’re stupid. Doesn’t allow me to tell you that, OK? If I tell you that a whole host of things happen, which are bad. So I can’t tell you. I can tell you this. I love our country and you’re going to be very happy,” Trump said at the time.
In recent months, DeSantis’s popularity has surged among GOP voters due to his policies against COVID-19 lockdowns, masking, and vaccine passport mandates. The governor has traveled to Wisconsin, Utah, Indiana, Texas, and other states as campaign fundraising initiatives.