A Republican from Florida shut down speculation about him running for president in the 2024 election on Sept. 7.
Gov. Ron DeSantis is not interested in competing against incumbent Joe Biden for presidency. The governor claimed any information suggesting otherwise is fake news.
“All the speculation about me is purely manufactured,” he said according to Fox News. “I just do my job, you know, we work hard. Obviously, our state has led on a lot of things … I hear all [of] this stuff and, honestly, it is nonsense.”
The remarks came during DeSantis’s press conference about a newly opened coronavirus monoclonal antibody treatment center in Saint Cloud, 28 miles south of downtown Orlando.
NBC affiliate WFLA previously reported the Republican’s comments indicate he plans to stay in the governor’s office. He had not filed his intent to stand for re-election as Florida governor at the time of publication.
Some polls suggest Desantis might be welcome running mate for Donald Trump’s next presidential bid.
Former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows agrees the governor always put Floridians at the top of his agenda.
“DeSantis has made it very, very clear that he is running for reelection as governor of Florida,” he said according to the Washington Examiner. “He does not shy away from being very bold in terms of the initiatives that he is putting forth. His reelect[ion campaign] for governor is a platform to show the policies, boldness, and–quite frankly–courage.”
Conservative rises to ‘fame’
DeSantis made mainstream media headlines for opposing lockdowns, mask-wearing and mandatory vaccines. This earned him strong backing from the Republican Party, especially Trump supporters.
The governor reopened the Sunshine State in September 2020 despite contrary advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He let students return to school, and never imposed mandatory face masks.
In April, DeSantis signed an executive order to ban vaccine passports statewide.
Despite being the third-most populous state, Florida reported fewer infections than New York where the strictest pandemic restrictions are in force.
He also opened monoclonal antibody treatment centers that administer Regeneron, the drug Trump used when he first contracted COVID-19. “Early treatment saves lives” is the Florida government’s slogan according to the official website.
“Florida seeks to ensure that every Floridian who desires a COVID-19 vaccine can obtain one but such vaccines will not be mandated,” he said at the time. “No COVID-19 vaccine is required by law. Individual COVID-19 vaccination records are private health information, which should not be shared by mandate.”
In a separate speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference 2021 DeSantis vowed to fight ‘critical race theory.’ The doctrine is taught in some schools that try to perpetrate blacks as victims and whites as repressors. This ultimately achieved the opposite result in many cases.
He also spoke out against biological men competing in women’s sports. The controversial issue has generated significant debate as pressure mounts from the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lobby for greater inclusion.