Ron DeSantis, who is trailing behind Donald Trump in the Republican nomination race, has said he is not interested in becoming Trump’s vice president.
“I don’t think so,” Mr. DeSantis said when asked about the possibility Wisconsin right now radio program. “I’m not a second type. I think I’m a leader. Governor of Florida, I’ve accomplished a lot. I think I could probably do more by staying there than being vice president, which actually has no authority.”
However, Mr. DeSantis could well be number two when it comes to the Republican primary.
After months of being touted as Mr Trump’s top challenger, the Florida governor struggled to gain ground in the early months of his presidential bid — and grappled with poll numbers and electoral votes falling in recent weeks.
Mr. DeSantis has also been the target of repeated attacks from Mr. Trump and his allies, which have hit Mr. DeSantis on everything from his record as a congressman to his handling of the Covid crisis to his personal conduct. In recent weeks, Mr. DeSantis has hit back and in turn attacked Mr. Trump.
The seemingly growing personal animosity between the two men could reduce the likelihood that they’ll share a ticket next fall — an idea Mr. DeSantis claims he has no interest in, at least at this point.
Mr. DeSantis also disagreed when asked who he might consider as his vice president, saying it was “a bit presumptuous to do that at this point in time.”
“I’m here to win the first primary, and that’s what we have to do first,” Mr. DeSantis said.
To win the first primary, Mr. DeSantis will require a dramatic twist of fate. Recent independent polls show it after Mr. Trump has gained as many as 23 points in Iowa.
Steven Cheung, a spokesman for Mr Trump, showered cold water on Mr DeSantis’ targets.
“Ron DeSantis is no one’s type,” he said in a statement reported by The New York Times and other outlets. “He’s not ‘the guy.’ He’s just “a guy”. Ron is just there, grumpy and sad because his number is as small as he is.”
Speculation has mounted in recent months over who Trump might choose as his vice president should he win the nomination following his split with former Vice President Mike Pence.
Some reports suggest Mr Trump and his team are interested in selecting a woman for the role.
Current Vice President Kamala Harris is the first woman to hold the position.