The New Yorker: Trump Believes He’d Beat DeSantis in 2024 Primary

The New Yorker: Trump Believes He'd Beat DeSantis in 2024 Primary florida gov. ron desantis greets president donald trump in 2020 in west palm Beach, florida Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis greets President Donald Trump in 2020 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Evan Vucci, File)

By Jay Clemons | Monday, 20 June 2022 03:48 PM

In a piece for this week's issue of The New Yorker, profile writer Dexter Filkins reports that — based on a personal conversation, most likely from within the last 17 months — former President Donald Trump believes he'd prevail over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the 2024 Republican primary, if each sought out the presidency through the GOP ticket.

A portion of Filkins' passage reads: "Trump told me that he was 'very close to making a decision' about whether to run. 'I don't know if Ron is running, and I don't ask him,' [Trump] said. 'It's his prerogative. I think I would win.' "

On the surface, there's news value with Trump projecting victory in a hypothetical matchup between him and DeSantis.

But would Trump and DeSantis — the Republican Party's two biggest stars right now, and apparent friends publicly and privately — do battle in the same Republican primary?

DeSantis, 43, up reelection as Florida's governor in November, has only been a household name in the national political landscape for about four years.

Contrast that with former President Trump, who will be 78 on Election Day in 2024. This might be his last realistic opportunity of reclaiming the nation's highest office.

With all of Trump's high-profile rallies in various cities, some of which draw substantial audiences and TV viewers, it stands to reason he's a healthy bet for running for president in 2024.

However, from The New Yorker's perspective, Trump also has reasons not to run.

A political consultant familiar with Trump and DeSantis offered the following quote to The New Yorker:

"[Trump] can do everything now that he could do when he was President, except shoot off missiles," said the consultant. "He's making a lot of money. That's the most important thing to him."

The reasons for DeSantis seeking out the presidency: He's young, bold, energetic, dynamic, and not afraid to speak his mind. He's also popular in his own state and has an emerging national brand.

On the flip side, the reasons for waiting until 2028 are easy to digest: If DeSantis were to lose to Trump in the 2024 GOP primary by a significant margin, it might damage his long-term presidential prospects.

It could also lead to a potential rift between the two Republican stars.

If he waits another four years, DeSantis might be hailed as Trump's hand-picked choice to succeed him as the GOP nominee, while leading the America First agenda into a new decade.

Filkins writes: "[DeSantis] can afford to wait. But there is every indication that he doesn't want to. 'Ron has been told for four years that he's Trump's successor — that all the women want to sleep with him, and all the men want to be him,' the consultant told me. 'Ron has heard way too many times, 'You're next.' "

DeSantis' fundraising arm for Florida's gubernatorial election has reportedly raised more than $100 million, a record-setting pace for a single election cycle in the state.

Numerous tracking polls have DeSantis as an overwhelming favorite over Democratic Party challengers Charlie Crist and Nikki Fried. (Primary day is Aug. 23.)

If successful, that gubernatorial victory could lead to a Trump-like war chest of campaign funds for the 2024 election cycle.

Original Article