DeSantis assaults Trump: ‘I don’t know what occurred to Donald Trump’

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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis studiously prevented even mentioning Donald Trump’s identify for months, as an alternative making veiled references to the “tradition of dropping” within the Republican occasion. 

The veil is off. 

Within the days following his announcement that he would problem Trump for the Republican nomination for president, DeSantis has accused him of “working to the left.” 

He’s drawing contrasts with the previous president on a variety of points together with abortion, immigration and the financial system. 

And — in a transfer DeSantis portrayed as the final word betrayal of conservative values — he says Trump was “siding with Disney” within the governor’s feud with the large company and cultural touchstone that’s additionally one of many state’s largest taxpayers and employers.

“I don’t know what occurred to Donald Trump,” he advised WWTN radio in Nashville. “This can be a totally different man at the moment than when he was working in 2015 and 2016. And I feel, I feel the route that he’s going together with his marketing campaign is the incorrect route.”

It was one in all greater than a dozen interviews with pleasant media retailers since submitting paperwork to run for president Wednesday. The primary, with Twitter Inc. proprietor Elon Musk, was overshadowed by technical glitches that marred DeSantis’s long-awaited entry into the race.

However his newfound willingness to tackle Trump immediately is clarifying the contours of the Republican nomination struggle. With DeSantis largely holding his tongue, his problem to Trump was largely a debate over personalities and temperament. 

Now, with DeSantis formally within the race and trailing Trump by 33 factors, the governor is staking out harder-line positions on coverage points. 

On spending, DeSantis stated Trump shares accountability for the nation’s $31 trillion in debt. “He added nearly $8 trillion in debt in simply 4 years as president,” he stated. “I used to be proper on these points and he wasn’t.”

On abortion, DeSantis defended Florida’s newly enacted six-week abortion ban towards Trump criticism that it was “too harsh” and that DeSantis didn’t know what he was doing. 

“He’s working to the left,” DeSantis stated. However he additionally stopped in need of endorsing the nationwide abortion ban favored by different Republican candidates. “I feel on the finish of the day, we’re going to avoid wasting extra lives with a bottom-up method,” he advised conservative discuss radio host Dana Loesch. 

On immigration, DeSantis accused Trump of supporting amnesty for undocumented immigrants as a part of a 2018 immigration invoice. “To hit me for taking the America First place I feel is fairly unusual,” DeSantis stated. 

The Trump marketing campaign responded that as a congressman, DeSantis voted for a invoice that gave authorized standing to some undocumented minors as a part of a package deal of harder immigration restrictions, earlier than opposing an identical plan. 

On crime, DeSantis criticized the First Step Act, Trump’s signature felony justice invoice, telling conservative podcaster Ben Shapiro Friday that it was “principally a jailbreak invoice.” DeSantis voted for an early model of the invoice however resigned from Congress earlier than the ultimate invoice handed the Home.

And DeSantis repeatedly expressed bewilderment over Trump’s criticism of his dealing with of the Walt Disney Co. DeSantis has moved to strip the corporate of its self-governing standing over Disney’s objections to laws prohibiting instructing on topics of race and sexual identification. Disney canceled plans this month to maneuver 2,000 staff to the state.

“What a multitude it’s,” Trump stated Thursday. “He might have labored out a simple settlement, however no — he needed to indicate the faux information how powerful a man he’s. He’s not.”

DeSantis clapped again. 

“He’s going left on tradition. He’s even sided with Disney towards me,” the Florida governor advised WWTN. “He’s siding with Disney and saying that I used to be incorrect for standing up with them. So, you realize, folks should make their choices about which manner they go.”

However at different instances, DeSantis hewed intently to the Trump line. Requested about Trump’s insistence in a CNN interview that he might resolve Russia’s struggle towards Ukraine “in in the future, 24 hours,” DeSantis backed the previous president. 

“I don’t know that he can get it completed in 24 hours. I imply, he’s liable to rhetorical prospers,” he advised Newsmax. “However I do suppose his intuition of attempting to get a settlement quite than have this factor develop into a struggle of attrition — or heaven forbid, escalate, with Russia having the most important nuclear arsenal on this planet — I do suppose that’s the appropriate intuition.”

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