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Trump says he’s under attack because of his lead in the presidential polls

By Elizabeth Delaney
|
May 1, 2023

Former President Donald Trump claims that his lead in the Republican polls has caused him to to be a target of "total assault" for the 2024 presidential election.

During an interview on "War Room," Trump told his former advisor Steve Bannon that "[We're under] total assault because we're winning in the polls," according to The Hill.

During the podcast, Trump went on to tell Bannon that he felt that DeSantis was "failing badly," even though DeSantis has not announced a presidential bid as of yet.

Trump Laments Prior Support for DeSantis

Trump lamented a time in the past when he once endorsed DeSantis, ranting about how he believed he influenced DeSantis' win as Governor, according to Fox Business.

"It’s always bad. You endorse somebody. He’s dead. He’s over, his political career. He’s going to be looking for a job. He’ll be lucky to get a job. Comes to me, begs me for an endorsement," Trump said.

"I give it to him. He ends up winning the election," Trump continued, "winning the nomination, winning the election by numbers you wouldn’t believe. I mean he was so far down he was gone, and then they shout to him a couple years later, ‘when do you run against the president?’ ‘Oh, I have no comment.’ No comment means the answer is yes."

Back in March, while in route to speak in Iowa, Trump spoke with a small group of reporters who were on his plane. He ranted for close to 10 minutes on his negative views of DeSantis, according to Politico.

It's believed that DeSantis poses Trump's biggest threat to winning the 2024 presidential bid if DeSantis decides to run.

Trump also let loose on his view of DeSantis with some reporters while on a return flight from West Palm Beach, accusing him o being a "flip-flopper," and disparaging his debating skills and comparing him to establishment-aligned Republicans such as Utah Senator Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Paul Ryan, according to Politico.

DeSantis Refuses to Respond to Trump's Attacks

DeSantis has refused to respond to Trump's attacks, recently stating that he doesn't find it productive to engage in, "trying to smear other Republicans."

DeSantis has been more focused on getting various bills to make their way through the Florida legislature, which is presently still in session.

One of the bills approved on Friday included significant election law changes, including a provision that will allow DeSantis to run for a presidential bid without having to resign his role as the state's Governor, according to Politico.

The bill was passed in the Senate on Thursday with a 28-12 vote, and then in the House with a vote of 76-34. It's now headed to DeSantis' desk for his signature, according to CBS news.

Florida Republicans hold supermajorities in both chambers, and this year is the third one in a row when they have made alterations to Florida's state election laws.

"I can't think of a better training ground than the state of Florida for a future commander in chief, Republican Representative Tyler Sirois told CBS.

It's been widely anticipated that DeSantis will announce his presidential bid next month, once the present Florida legislature has completed their current session, according to NBC.

"I think a lot of it's secondhand material, so there's not been any things that I've been focused on this mission that we've been doing," DeSantis told Fox reporters in Israel Thursday when asked about a 2024 run.

"We're going to end up making it pretty much around the world by the time we're done. And if there's any announcements, you know, those will come at the appropriate time,” he said.