Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), an outspoken supporter of former President Donald Trump, suggested that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis could be a viable Republican candidate for president in 2024.
“He is a strong potential presidential candidate in 2024,” Gaetz said Feb. 14 on Fox News. “The Biden team knows that, and so they’re trying to somehow cast aspersions on the Florida experience because you know what, throughout America, there’s a lot of Florida envy right now.”
He was referring to DeSantis’s orders to keep Florida open during the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic and reports that the White House may be considering placing travel restrictions on the state. The Epoch Times has reached out to the White House for comment.
“People see Florida businesses are opening and unemployment is dropping, and home buying is increasing,” Gaetz said. “That type of prosperity is attractive to people who are having to endure a lockdown in other parts of America.”
DeSantis on Feb. 14 praised his state’s response to the virus and responded to reports of the White House’s travel restrictions.
“One, it would be unconstitutional, it would be a political attack against Florida. … We also have 26 other states and the District of Columbia that have higher per-capita COVID mortality than we do. We have 28 states that have higher per-capita cases that we do,” DeSantis told Fox Business.
“There’s no basis in medical, no basis in economics, there’s no basis in reality to do this except to punish a state who is doing it better than what his experts have recommended.”
DeSantis hasn’t said whether he would run for president.