Rumors that Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) will enter the 2024 GOP presidential primary gained fuel Thursday from a Washington Post report.
The report, citing several unnamed sources, claims Florida’s governor has privately indicated plans to run for president in the 2024 election.
The New York Post further reported:
Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has told people in private that he will launch a campaign for the White House later this year, according to a report.
While DeSantis, 44, has not publicly said that he will enter the 2024 fray, the Washington Post reported on Thursday that in recent private conversations with allies, the governor of the Sunshine State has described his presidential candidacy as a certainty.
DeSantis, who was re-elected in a landslide last November, is not expected to announce his entry into the 2024 race until after the Florida state legislative session ends in May.
Preparations for his expected presidential run are far along, according to the Washington Post.
A pro-DeSantis super PAC launched by former Trump administration official Ken Cuccinelli on Thursday is expected to serve as an approved outside spending vehicle for DeSantis’s 2024 campaign, according to the outlet.
Cuccinelli’s NEVER BACK DOWN PAC is one of four political action committees seeking to draft DeSantis to enter the 2024 presidential race.
Cuccinelli, who served as acting director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services under former President Donald Trump, said in a statement Thursday that “grassroots conservatives see the governor as a leader and a fighter with a winning conservative track record who will lead the Republican Party to victory in 2024.”
“Based on those conversations, I am most confident that we will build an unmatched grassroots political army for Governor DeSantis to help carry him to the White House,” he added.
DeSantis is scheduled to visit Iowa on Friday and Nevada on Saturday as he travels the country promoting his memoir. Both are early nominating states in the 2024 GOP presidential primary.
He is also slated to travel to New Hampshire later this month.
The Florida governor finished his successful gubernatorial re-election effort with more than $70 million in campaign funds to spare, according to the Washington Post, and with more high-dollar contributions arriving in the first two months of 2023.
His advisers have reportedly been examining ways in which that money could be used in a presidential campaign, such as by transferring the money to a pro-DeSantis super PAC.
Polling indicates that DeSantis would be Trump’s most formidable adversary in the 2024 GOP primary.
The 76-year-old former president is averaging 45% support in early polls, according to RealClearPolitics, while DeSantis is averaging 29% support.
DeSantis’ office did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.
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