Former President Donald Trump faced backlash online Monday for praising failed Florida Democrat gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist in a video attacking Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis.
“For those of you that didn’t notice, Florida was doing great long before Ron DeSanctus got there,” Trump said. “People are fleeing from New York to Florida and other places because of high taxes and out of control crime. It’s really bad. Not because of the governor, thank you Mr. President for doing that.”
“But it’s not because of the governor, Florida was doing fantastically,” Trump continued. “You had a governor named Rick Scott who did a very good job. Even Charlie Crist, a Democrat, did a good job and he had very good numbers.”
DeSantis crushed Crist in last year’s elections by a whopping 19.4 points with a margin of 1.5 million votes, the most dominant win in Florida gubernatorial history.
“Sunshine and ocean are very alluring. It’s not too hard to work with those factors,” Trump concluded. “So just remember Florida was doing really well long before Ron DeSanctus got there.”
President Trump: "For those of you that didn't notice, Florida was doing great long before Ron DeSanctus got there!" pic.twitter.com/ugpmOVq8f5
— Trump War Room (@TrumpWarRoom) March 13, 2023
Trump told a group of reporters on his plane that DeSantis was “dead as a dog” when he got the president’s endorsement in 2018 and, when asked if he regretted endorsing DeSantis, Trump said that he did.
“Yeah, maybe, probably yeah,” Trump said. “I like people that are loyal. This guy was dead.”
Trump faced widespread backlash across the political Right over his latest attack on DeSantis.
“Trump’s non stop snipping at DeSantis, who isn’t responding, shows the power hierarchy and shows who is threatened,” political commentator Mike Cernovich tweeted. “Contenders call out champions, not the other way around.”
Former Fox News host Jedediah Bila tweeted, “I don’t want to say I warned ya, but I did. Ego is a very self-destructive thing.”
“This is absolutely ridiculous,” podcast host Dave Rubin tweeted. “Trump is truly at a loss with how to deal with DeSantis. We have never seen this before. Plus, DeSantis hasn’t even announced, and is still making all the right moves.”
A small sample of other notable responses included:
Whomever is advising Trump to praise Charlie Crist should be fired immediately. https://t.co/b3ELwMKTmb
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) March 13, 2023
Trump is obsessed, wildly so, with attacking DeSantis. This consumes him far more than the problem of Biden or whatever. And the blue-collar billionaires who surround him are of the same mind. DeSantis is the enemy right now so it's full-time hate. https://t.co/twN4L1m7CH
— Jeffrey A Tucker (@jeffreyatucker) March 13, 2023
Donald Trump is here to praise Charlie Crist in order to attack Ron DeSantis https://t.co/ueC3hjIYvq
— Sunny McSunnyface (@sunnyright) March 13, 2023
Why’d he win it by 20 when you could only win it by 4? https://t.co/9B8h7MAcB2
— Will Chamberlain (@willchamberlain) March 13, 2023
The praise of Charlie Crist — whom DeSantis crushed by almost 20 points — is my favorite part of this little Truth Social rant in video form: https://t.co/q33rwwTJ4b
— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) March 13, 2023