The inter-GOP feud between Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former President Donald Trump has erupted into open combat.
Trump, 76, launched his most provocative attack yet on the rising GOP star late Tuesday — branding him a “reno-globalist” in an angry post on TruthSocial.
“The real Ron is a RINO globalist, who immediately shut down Florida and even its beaches,” the former president posted. “Loved [COVID-19] Wasted a lot of money on vaccines and ‘testing’. How quickly people forget!
The Mar-a-Lago resident then retweeted several posts portraying DeSantis as an establishment Republican masquerading as a vagabond.
Until this past weekend, Trump had limited his rhetoric against DeSantis to accusations of political treason, insisting that the 44-year-old’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign was on life support before the 45th. The president reinstated it at the 11th hour.
“I think it would be a huge act of disloyalty because, you know, I took it in,” Trump told supporters on Saturday. “He had no chance. His political life was over.
But the former president now appears willing to stop DeSantis by any means necessary, a strategy that could force his more studied rival to retaliate.
After Democrat Charlie Crist’s 20-point re-election loss in November, DeSantis has steadfastly refused to engage Trump to this point.
Instead, he has highlighted his electoral victory, while holding up Florida as an example of a nationwide Republican renaissance.
DeSantis is reportedly planning to release a memoir in the coming months titled: “The Courage to Be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Recovery.”
Asked Tuesday about some of Trump’s weekend jabs, the governor pointed to his campaign trail as evidence of growing popular support.
“Not only did we win re-election, but we won the most votes of any Republican gubernatorial candidate in the history of the state of Florida,” he said.
DeSantis has embedded himself in the nation’s culture wars in his second term, holding several press conferences each week touting new and sometimes controversial initiatives.
That approach has allowed him to work locally and resonate nationally, with his many campaigns — from defending DEI programs at state colleges to fighting with Disney — reaching Florida and beyond. Creating headlines.
With DeSantis’ continued gains in several national polls, the tactic seems to have worked so far.
“The thinking is that they [DeSantis] can drown him. [Trump] Out with action and tangible accomplishments,” a Florida political insider told the Post. “Being competent and mature off the field. We’ll see how long it lasts.”
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