As of Tuesday, there were two official Republican presidential contenders for the party’s 2024 nomination, and more candidates are expected to jump into the race, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who dropped the strongest hint yet that he will during a press conference in Jacksonville.
There to discuss tort reform, the popular GOP governor was asked by a reporter about former UN Ambassador and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s official entry into the race earlier in the day and, specifically, whether DeSantis will be the next to declare.
“Nikki Haley announced her presidential run today, do you plan on following suit?” the reporter asked.
“Hahaha! Wouldn’t you like to know,” DeSantis responded with a laugh.
BREAKING: DeSantis asked if he's running for president
"Nikki Haley announced her presidential run today, do you plan on following suit?"
"Hahaha! Wouldn't you like to know!" pic.twitter.com/skYs9wi3DL
— Florida’s Voice (@FLVoiceNews) February 14, 2023
Meanwhile, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who was the late John McCain’s presidential running mate in 2008, is encouraging DeSantis to stand down in 2024 and throw his support behind Donald Trump, the first to declare officially for the party’s nomination.
During an interview on Newsmax with host Eric Bolling, Palin spoke about rumors that DeSantis could make a run for the White House in 2024, which would pit him against Trump in the Republican primary. Trump announced in November that he was running for president.
“Do you think DeSantis jumps in?” Bolling asked Palin.
“DeSantis doesn’t need to,” Palin replied. “I envision him as our president someday, but not right now. Everybody I speak with in Florida, they all love him. And he does set the tone for, I’d say every other governor in the nation. I think he’s our best governor and he should stay governor for a bit longer. He’s young. You know he has decades ahead of him where he can be our president.”
“Trump needs to choose somebody who, like him, has nothing to lose. What more can they do to that person personally or verbal attacks or anything else on the family? That person has been through the wringer, so they know what they’re getting into. And that person then can just focus on doing what’s right for the people,” Palin said.
“Are you describing yourself?” Bolling asked.
“Not necessarily,” Palin said before referencing her run with McCain. “However, I’ll tell you, the opportunity that I had to run with someone who wasn’t as commonsense [of a] constitutional conservative as I, and I think the majority of Republicans were.”