Florida Governor DeSantis to announce Republican presidential candidacy on Wednesday

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis plans to declare his candidacy for the 2024 U.S. presidential nomination Wednesday night during a conversation with Twitter owner Elon Musk.

DeSantis’ campaign said its long-awaited announcement will come to social media site Twitter Spaces, where those who join can participate in audio conversations. It will be moderated by tech entrepreneur David Sacks.

DeSantis, 44, immediately becomes former President Donald Trump’s main challenger for the nomination. National polls show DeSantis trailing Trump, but also well ahead of several other Republican hopefuls who seek to oust Democratic President Joe Biden in the election 18 months from now.

DeSantis served six years in the United States House of Representatives before narrowly winning the governorship of Florida in 2018 and then seeking re-election last year.

DeSantis has toured several political battleground states ahead of his official presidential bid announcement, speaking at Republican rallies and hoping for early support in what promises to be a protracted and contentious contest for the presidential nomination. party.

Privately, he recently told a group of potential campaign donors that he believed only three candidates had a chance of winning the US presidency next year: Biden, Trump and himself, and that he believed that he had a better chance of defeating Biden than Trump.

For months Trump has attacked DeSantis, most recently in TV ads calling him “DeSanctimonious” and attacking him as disloyal after Trump endorsed his 2018 run for governor of Florida.

DeSantis supporters have painted him politically as a like-minded Trump, but without the accompanying drama and chaos that has characterized much of the Trump presidency, or the criminal investigations Trump faces regarding his attempted to overturn his loss of re-election in 2020 and his retention of classified documents when he left office in early 2021.

DeSantis, a staunch conservative, pushed through important right-wing bills in the recent session of the Florida State Legislature, including a ban on abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, before many women do not know they are pregnant; permission to carry a concealed weapon without a permit; eliminate the need for a unanimous verdict to impose the death penalty; and extending a measure to block investment in Florida based on environmental, social and governance considerations.

DeSantis continues to wage a fight against Florida’s largest employer, entertainment conglomerate Disney, because of the company’s outspoken political views in favor of women’s rights, which DeSantis opposes.

Several other Republicans are also seeking the party’s presidential nomination, including Tim Scott, the only black Republican in the US Senate; former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, appointed by Trump as US Ambassador to the United Nations; former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy.

Former Vice President Mike Pence plans to enter the 2024 Republican nomination contest, as do former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and others .

USA voanews

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