While the camps of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and California Gov. Gavin Newsom work on rules and logistics for a potential head-to-head debate, Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Nikki Fried doesn’t expect the event to happen.
“I think at the end of the day this was a big ruse,” Fried said during an appearance on the “Deeper Dive with Dara Kam” podcast.
Fried, the former state agriculture commissioner who ran unsuccessfully for governor last year, said DeSantis agreed to debate Newsom “in his desperation to get media and good media attention.”
Fried also doesn’t expect much from DeSantis during next week’s Republican debate.
“He’s a horrible, horrible debater,” Fried said. “I’ve never seen him do a good debate. He’s going to get annihilated by the first Republican debate.”
When asked in June by Fox News commentator Sean Hannity, Newsom said he’d be “all in” on debating DeSantis.
The Florida governor agreed to the debate while appearing Aug. 2 on Hannity’s show.
“All right. You might remember earlier this year I interviewed California Governor Gavin Newsom not that long ago. I floated the idea of a policy-based debate, you know, red versus blue — red state versus blue state — between Gavin Newsom and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis,” said Fox News host Sean Hannity.
“All right. You heard Gavin make the offer. Your answer is?” asked Hannity.
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“Absolutely, I’m game. Let’s get it done. Just tell me when and where. We’ll do it,” replied DeSantis.
“And here’s the thing, Sean, I mean, in one respect, the debate between California and Florida, you know, has already been had, as you suggest, people have been voting on that. They have been voting on it with their feet. They have fled California in record numbers,” added Desantis.
“Florida has been the number one state for net in-migration. We have the number one ranked economy. Number one now in education. Crime rate at a 50-year low. In another sense, this is the debate for the future of our country because you have people like Joe Biden, they would love to see the Californication of the United States. Biden may not even be the nominee. You could have Gavin Newsom. You could have Kamala Harris. And I think if we go down that direction, that’s going to accelerate American decline. We can’t see America decline anymore. We need to reverse American decline,” DeSantis concluded.
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