Ron DeSantis has officially launched his bid to become the next U.S. President at the 2024 election.
The 44-year-old is largely seen as the strongest Republican challenger to former President Donald Trump.
DeSantis is the Governor of Florida. Like Trump, he represents the Republican Party.
Who is Ron DeSantis?
DeSantis has been the Governor of Florida since 2019. He received Trump’s “full endorsement” for his election campaign in 2018.
DeSantis has expanded gun rights in Florida and enforced stricter policies on illegal immigration. He has also banned almost all abortions after six weeks of pregnancy (which is pending Supreme Court approval).
He also signed the Parental Rights in Education bill – commonly known by critics as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law – which restricts discussion of LGBTQ+ issues in classrooms in public schools.
DeSantis launched his campaign on Twitter in an interview with Elon Musk this morning.
He said he was running to “lead the great American comeback”, and that he would also work to “restore sanity to our nation”.
“We should choose a new direction, a path that would lead to American revitalisation.”
How DeSantis can win the Republican nomination
The Republican Party needs to nominate one candidate to represent them at the 2024 presidential election. DeSantis and Trump are the two favourites to receive the nomination.
They will need to win primary votes and caucuses to receive the nomination. This will generally be voted on by members of the Republican Party.
These are expected to begin in January, with the winning candidate to be decided sometime in the middle of 2024.
Donald Trump’s response
Trump called DeSantis’ launch (which was delayed by some technical difficulties) a “disaster”, and said it would set the stage for the rest of his campaign.
Trump posted a meme depicting DeSantis’ campaign as an exploding rocket, and a minute-long video putting down DeSantis. It ended with the message: “Truth is, there’s only one person who can make America Great Again”.
Trump officially launched his bid for the U.S. presidency last year. He has also begun campaigning ahead of next year’s election.