Related video above: What’s next for Ron DeSantis?
TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called former President Trump’s win in Iowa “a huge warning sign” for Republicans days after he dropped out of the presidential race and endorsed Trump.
DeSantis joined the “Steve Deace Show,” a conservative podcast, on Tuesday to talk about the current state of the 2024 presidential race. He said the low turnout in the Iowa caucuses shows that people don’t want to see Trump as the GOP nominee again.
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“They were conservative but they did not want to see Trump nominated again, but they had basically been told that it was inevitable, that it was over, then why even bother? And they just totally dropped out of the process,” DeSantis said.
“I think they’re just like, you know what? We’re doing this again? And they’re checked out. So it’s a huge warning sign for Republicans, nationally, based on what we saw in Iowa,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis said Iowa has more registered Republicans than it did in 2016, but had less of a turnout.
The Washington Post reported that turnout for the Iowa caucuses was lower than 2016, 2012 and 2008. Iowa had record-low temperatures on the day of the caucuses.
“There’s a lot of our voters who have checked out,” he said.
DeSantis said he thinks people were ready to move on from Trump but the indictments against him may have helped him in the primary, which made it difficult to run against him.
“It really created a rallying effect to him. I think he had strong support from Fox and conservative media,” DeSantis said. “Structurally, that was something that was very difficult to deal with.”
DeSantis said people who have been conservative for a lifetime have told him that they don’t want to vote for Trump again.
“That’s a problem,” he said. “So he’s got to figure out a way to solve that. I think there’s an enthusiasm problem overall, and then I also just think there’s some voters that have checked out at this point, that you’ve got to find a way to get them back.”
DeSantis suspended his presidential campaign and endorsed Trump on Sunday, just days before the New Hampshire primary, which Trump also won.
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