McEnany calls DeSantis ‘hottest gov in GOP politics’, says the time is now to jump in presidential race

Former Trump-era White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany just potentially stirred up a hornet’s nest by recommending that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis enter the 2024 presidential race.

Speaking on Fox News’s “Outnumbered” this Wednesday, McEnany compared the governor to former Trump-era U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, who just entered the ring herself this week.


“She was the hottest name in Republican politics in 2011 to like 2015, I would say,” she noted as she compared Haley’s popularity back then to her lack of popularity now.

Based on this, she recommended that DeSantis enter the race now before his own popularity dwindles just like that of Haley.

This is the case for Gov. Ron DeSantis to get in right now. People say, will he get in? Will he wait? How can you wait when you are currently the hottest governor in Republican politics, seeing how hard it is to regenerate that attention almost a decade later?” she said.

This recommendation isn’t likely to sit well with her former boss. Trump has demonstrated in recent months that he loathes Ron “DeSanctimonious,” as he publicly calls him.

Observers believe the loathing stems from Trump’s fear that DeSantis poses a genuine threat to him on the campaign trail. What McEnany said about him being “the hottest governor in Republican politics” is therefore not apt to sit well with them.

Indeed, one recent Marquette University poll found that 64 percent of Republicans across the states would choose DeSantis over Trump as the 2024 GOP nominee.

The same poll reportedly found that registered voters writ large likewise preferred DeSantis to Biden, 45 percent to 38 percent.

Conversely, Trump and Biden were tied at 40 percent.

Another recent poll — this one conducted by USA Today — also found GOP voters preferring DeSantis to Trump.

“By 2-1, GOP and GOP-leaning voters now say they want Trump’s policies but a different standard-bearer to carry them. While 31% want the former president to run, 61% prefer some other Republican nominee who would continue the policies Trump has pursued,” the paper reported in December.

“They have a name in mind: Two-thirds of Republicans and those inclined to vote Republican want Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to run for president. By double digits, 56% to 33%, they prefer DeSantis over Trump,” the paper added.

So it appears DeSantis does pose a serious threat to Trump, which is why observers expect the former president to snap at McEnany sometime soon, either publicly or privately.

For the time being, Trump is continuing to publicly and privately bash DeSantis.

“[H]e has insulted Mr. DeSantis in casual conversations, describing him as ‘Meatball Ron,’ an apparent dig at his appearance, or ‘Shutdown Ron,’ a reference to restrictions the governor put in place at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic,” The New York Times reported last weekend.

The first nickname attracted the attention of late night “comedy” hosts like Stephen Colbert:

Keep in mind the Florida governor hasn’t announced his own run for the presidency. Nor has he indicated that he even plans to run. Only Trump and Haley have thus far announced.

“DeSantis has been getting the benefit of an announced presidential candidate — and all the media attention that comes with that — without having to get involved in every dogfight, because he is operating under the auspices of a governor who is doing his job,” Josh Holmes, a Republican strategist, said to the Times.

That said, if and when he enters the race, he can expect a helluva fight against Trump.

“I don’t think people fully understand how ruthless he is. He has no boundaries. And when you’re on the receiving end of that, you wonder what’s next,” Jack O’Donnell told the Times.

O’Donnell is a former executive who published a book in the 90s about working with Trump.

DeSantis has also been facing attacks from Trump’s allies, including but not limited to Roger Stone and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

“I envision him as our president someday, but not right now,” Palin said of DeSantis to Newsmax this week.

“Everybody I speak with in Florida, they all love him. And he does set the tone for, I’d say, every other governor in the nation. I think he’s our best governor, and he should stay governor for a bit longer. He’s young. You know, he has decades ahead of him where he can be our president,” she added.

Decades? That’s a long time, and as McEnany noted, the governor’s clout and popularity may simply not be the same by then …


Please help us! If you are fed up with letting radical big tech execs, phony fact-checkers, tyrannical liberals and a lying mainstream media have unprecedented power over your news please consider making a donation to BPR to help us fight them. Now is the time. Truth has never been more critical!

Success! Thank you for donating. Please share BPR content to help combat the lies.
Vivek Saxena


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

PLEASE JOIN OUR NEW COMMENT SYSTEM! We love hearing from our readers and invite you to join us for feedback and great conversation. If you've commented with us before, we'll need you to re-input your email address for this. The public will not see it and we do not share it.

Latest Articles