A poll conducted at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference found that a majority of attendees would prefer failed 2022 Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake as their vice president over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Attendees were specifically asked who they’d prefer as the vice president to former President Donald Trump, who received 62 percent of the vote in a separate poll on who should be the GOP nominee going into the 2024 presidential election.
Twenty percent of attendees chose Lake, whereas only 14 percent chose DeSantis.
BREAKING: Kari Lake wins the CPAC Straw Poll for the 2024 Republican Vice Presidential Candidate:
Lake – 20%
DeSantis – 14%
Haley – 10%
— ALX (@alx) March 4, 2023
In DeSantis’ defense, he didn’t attend this year’s CPAC, whereas Laki did. It’s not clear how that may have played into attendees’ perceptions.
What’s known is that he skipped CPAC this year so that he could deliver a speech at the annual Harris County Lincoln Reagan dinner on Friday night.
According to reports, he used his speech to attack the left.
“Evoking the battle of the Alamo when soldiers fought against a much bigger army, DeSantis sounded more like he was marshaling the more than 1,500 people at the George R. Brown Convention Center for a war. He said they aren’t surrounded by foreign soldiers but instead by ‘woke foot soldiers’ who are trying to upend American values,” according to the Houston Chronicle.
“We must fight them wherever they are. We will never ever surrender to the woke mob,” the governor said in his own words.
It was an honor to welcome Gov. @RonDeSantisFL to the Lone Star State and share the stage with him at the Harris County Republican Party’s Lincoln Reagan Dinner. pic.twitter.com/DL8czNFu3Y
— Monica De La Cruz (@monica4congress) March 4, 2023
DeSantis was accompanied by his family, who took in a rodeo while in town:
The kids and I had a great time in Houston!
Thanks for the fun day, @RODEOHOUSTON. pic.twitter.com/ggcZhEqCZp
— Casey DeSantis (@CaseyDeSantis) March 4, 2023
Speaking at CPAC, Lake meanwhile focused partly on praising Trump.
She reportedly said there’s a great battle between “globalists vs. we the people” and that Trump is the man to lead the people in this battle.
“Donald Trump not only warned us about it — he started to dismantle that entrenched globalist machine. That man was a bull in a China shop. And I missed that man so much. That’s exactly what we need right now,” she said.
She also reportedly suggested that America’s founding was rooted in a battle between “globalists vs. colonists” and that “we still have that DNA from our Founding Fathers.”
And she tried to relitigate the 2020 and 2022 elections.
“Lake lamented her and Trump’s losses in their respective elections and alleged that fraud deprived them of victory. Election officials have repeatedly disputed those accusations,” according to the Washington Examiner.
“There’s no hiding it. There’s no sugarcoating it. They stole that election. The entire world saw that crime was committed in broad daylight on Nov. 8. They sabotaged Election Day,” she said, referencing her own failed election last year.
Some left-wing critics suspect her defense of Trump and his 2020 election claims stem from a desire by her to be chosen by him as her VP.
Only ONE President has taken on the establishment in Washington.
That President is Donald J. Trump.
I can’t wait for him to get back into the White House to do it again! #Trump2024 pic.twitter.com/sgDhlrGqTX
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) March 4, 2023
Sucking up to get the VP spot ?
— Mads Damsgaard (@MadsDamsgaard) March 5, 2023
Sucking up to the guy won’t get you a real job!
— Lee Pascale (@LeePascale2) March 5, 2023
She’s auditioning for loser Trump VP slot. Pretty unique, 2 losers who refuse to concede.
— Frump Tuck (@ljbNicely) March 5, 2023
For God’s sake, Kari. Quit sucking up to the former guy. It’s not a good look for you. You LOST! Just go away!
— Resist always! Mask up again people!! (@SDonnelly_77) March 4, 2023
Kari Lake seems to be auditioning for Trump’s VP pick. Spoiler alert Kari: Trump hates losers and you lost. Trump doesn’t like others grifting off his base.
— James (@JamesSNYC) March 4, 2023
But keep in mind there’s no guarantee Trump will be the GOP nominee. While it’s true he performed better than DeSantis at CPAC (polling at 62 percent to the governor’s 20 percent), he’s been trailing the governor in numerous other polls.
In the top battleground state of New Hampshire, he carries the support of 30 percent of the GOP base versus DeSantis’ 42 percent, according to a University of New Hampshire poll released last month.
Similarly, 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.
2024 Presidential Election Poll
(R) Ron DeSantis: 45% (+7)
(D) Joe Biden: 38%
(R) Donald Trump: 40% (=)
(D) Joe Biden: 40%
7 point swing towards DeSantis from Nov. poll by the same pollster (was 42/42)@MULawPoll | 876 RV | Jan 9-20 | +/- 4%https://t.co/CzXwuZ6Mua pic.twitter.com/uUTRYMNKKM
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) January 26, 2023
Another 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.
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