Former President Donald Trump’s Press Secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, now a Fox News contributor, reported that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis could defeat Trump in the upcoming 2024 GOP presidential primary.
On Wednesday, McEnany shared her opinion on “Fox & Friends” in advance of DeSantis’ expected formal declaration of his candidacy.
Putting distance between herself and her former boss, McEnany offered the DeSantis campaign some political advice. The former press secretary recommended the DeSantis campaign focus on policy and not follow Trump in name-calling.
“If I’m on the DeSantis campaign,” McEnany advised, “I’m looking at this, and I’m saying, ‘Where am I to the right of Trump? I’m to the right of him on Disney and corporate America and fighting for children. I’m to the right of him on abortion. I’m to the right of him on vaccination mandates.’”
McEnany added: “Trump’s not for mandates, of course, but he did call himself the father of the vaccine. If I’m DeSantis, I’m going to ignore the name-calling, knock it in the mud, and I’m going to cleave to the right on policy.”
The internet is abuzz with news that the Florida governor is expected to announce his candidacy on Wednesday evening, with the support and endorsement of Space X, Tesla, and Twitter CEO, Elon Musk.
Though it is early in the polling, and DeSantis has yet to announce his intent to run for President, most polls show him trailing the former President, but doing much better than Trump in a head-to-head race against President Joe Biden.
Fox News works for Ron DeSanctimonious, and Kayleigh McEnany sold her soul to Fox News!
Sad 😢 pic.twitter.com/49aG5xpSjD
— Freedom 🇺🇸🦅 (@PU28453638) May 24, 2023
In additional comments that appeared to come at Trump’s expense, McEnany advised GOP candidate Nikki Haley to change her campaign strategy—suggesting that attacking DeSantis by saying he is much like Trump actually hurts Trump more than the Florida Governor.
“I am deeply confused by the Nikki Haley campaign against DeSantis,” said McEnany. “You’re reminding people that DeSantis is like Trump, which is a good thing in a Republican primary because Trump is enormously popular.”
McEnany suggested that many GOP voters are looking for a candidate like DeSantis—one who is Conservative like Trump, but more measured than Trump, and one who is to the right of Trump on parental rights, abortion, and COVID-related mandates.