DeSantis drops out of the US presidential race and supports Trump

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has given up the race for the US Republican presidential nomination and has thrown his support behind former President Donald Trump. The right-wing hardliner said in an Internet video on Sunday, two days before the primaries in the state of New Hampshire, that he saw “no clear path to victory” in the internal party competition. This means that the conservative party’s primaries will be a duel between the highly favored Trump and the former UN ambassador Nikki Haley.

“It has become clear to me that a majority of Republican primary participants want to give Donald Trump another chance,” said the 45-year-old governor, who was long considered Trump’s most dangerous rival, almost a week after the disappointing start to the primary election at Iowa State. Although he has had “some differences of opinion” with Trump in the past, for example with regard to the corona pandemic, he is now behind him.

Trump said he was “honored” by the Florida governor’s support in a statement. It is now time “for all Republicans to rally behind President Trump” to defeat incumbent Joe Biden in the November presidential election and end his “disastrous presidency,” Trump’s campaign team said. The ex-president himself attacked his rival Haley as a “globalist” during a campaign appearance in New Hampshire.

Haley, in turn, told supporters in the state in the northeast of the United States that the field of applicants now only consists of “a guy and a lady.” Voters will have to decide whether they want “more of the same or something new,” the former UN ambassador added. The former governor of the state of South Carolina is hoping for the votes of all those conservative voters who have had enough of the right-wing populist Trump.

On Sunday, Haley attacked Trump’s mental state on CBS. “It’s just not at the same level as it was in 2016. I think we’re seeing some of that decline,” she said. However, the “chaos” that Trump always causes is more serious.

Last week, the ex-president confirmed his favorite status for his party’s presidential candidacy with a clear victory in the first Republican primary in Iowa. He won 51 percent of the vote, well ahead of DeSantis, who came in second with 21 percent. Haley followed with 19 percent.

Trump could set the course for his candidacy early with a victory in the New Hampshire primary. No candidate has ever lost the race for the Republican presidential nomination after winning the primaries in the first two states.

Haley still hopes for success in New Hampshire, where voters registered as independents are also allowed to take part in the Republican primaries, which favors moderate candidates. However, polls predict a clear Trump victory there too. In the average survey conducted by the specialized website “FiveThirtyEight,” the 77-year-old recently had a lead of more than 13 percentage points. Nationwide, his lead is significantly larger.

DeSantis’ poll average in the state was just under six percent. The governor, who takes a tough line on migration policy and presents himself as a champion against a left-wing “woke” ideology, was long considered Trump’s most dangerous challenger within the party. But his campaign never got off the ground; DeSantis often seemed wooden and aloof.

Despite his numerous judicial problems with four indictments, Trump remains extremely popular among the right-wing base and wants to secure the primary election victory in the spring. Particularly important will be March 5, known as “Super Tuesday,” when Republicans will hold primaries in 15 states.

The winner of the statewide Republican primary will challenge incumbent Biden in the November 5 presidential election. Biden is sure to be nominated again as a presidential candidate by the Democratic Party. In the race for the White House, the president is once again focusing on the issue of abortion rights, with which the Democrats were already successful in the 2022 midterm elections.

However, many Democratic politicians and voters have doubts that Biden, at 81, is the right candidate. He is already the oldest president in US history.