Florida GOP Governor Ron DeSantis’ rivals for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination took aim at the populist presidential candidate after his Tuesday town hall event.
DeSantis joined Fox News for a town hall event in the Hawkeye State ahead of the famous Iowa Caucus, where the governor spoke on inflation and government accountability and took questions from the audience.
Following DeSantis’ town hall discussion with Fox News’ Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum, though, the Florida governor’s GOP rivals fired off their thoughts on his performance.
Former President Trump’s campaign went off during the town hall event, attacking DeSantis’ record on the COVID-19 pandemic and claiming in one post that the Florida governor ‘issued some of the most draconian Covid restrictions of anywhere in the United States.’
In another post, the Trump campaign wrote, ‘Ron DeSanctimonious PRAISES Trump’s COVID Task Force, says Fauci and Birx were doing a good job,’ with a clip of DeSantis from during the COVID-19 pandemic.
‘Ron DeSantis and his allies have set him up for devastating failure,’ the Trump campaign tweeted. ‘Everything he does is one giant astroturf that will be exposed in just a few short days.’
Trump’s campaign also shared a CNN clip that the campaign said ‘exposed’ the governor as a ‘massive COVID hypocrite.’
‘MUST WATCH: DeSantis EXPOSED as MASSIVE COVID HYPOCRITE, repeatedly praised Fauci and his policies during the pandemic,’ Trump wrote.
Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s campaign chirped at DeSantis during his town hall, too, slamming the governor over his answers to various questions, from inflation to his polling numbers against President Biden.
‘RON DESANTIS on inflation: ‘This was created by Washington,’’ Haley’s campaign tweeted on Tuesday. ‘Uh, Ron, you were in Washington and you voted to increase the debt limit.’
‘Tonight, Iowa voters saw a desperate, flailing Ron DeSantis trying to cover up his record of banning fracking and drilling in Florida, and voting to increase the debt limit in Congress. The more DeSantis loses, the more he lies,’ AnnMarie Graham-Barnes, Haley campaign spokesperson, told Fox News Digital following the town hall.
‘FUN FACT: Ron DeSantis performs the worst against Biden,’ Haley’s campaign wrote in another tweet. ‘LOL.’
‘Question from voter: Why is it so hard for you to win over conservatives?’ another tweet from Haley’s camp read. ‘Ron DeSantis: Word [salad emoji].’
When asked for comment, DeSantis’ campaign pointed to a tweet by the governor slamming Haley and Trump and sharing a clip of his comments from his Fox News town hall.
‘Donald Trump’s running for his issues. Nikki Haley’s running for her donors’ issues,’ DeSantis wrote.
‘I’m running for your issues, your family’s issues, and to turn this country around,’ he added.
DeSantis was the second GOP presidential candidate this week to hold a Fox News town hall ahead of the Iowa Caucus next week.
The Florida governor is vying for the GOP nomination to take on President Biden for the White House in November.
However, the battle for the nomination is far from over: DeSantis will have to get through Haley and Trump to get the Republican Party’s coveted nod.