(DailyVantage.com) – Republican Florida Gov. and 2024 presidential candidate Ron DeSantis agreed to a FOX News debate with Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom, saying, “Absolutely, I’m game.” DeSantis continued by hyping the event, saying, “In another sense, this is the debate for the future of our country because you have people like Joe Biden who would love to see the Californianization of the United States.”
DeSantis and Newsom govern two of the top three most populous states and have sparred back and forth in political discourse for over a year because of their opposing viewpoints. While a faceoff seemed unlikely due to DeSantis’ presidential campaign, DeSantis agreed when FOX News anchor Sean Hannity asked. An aide to Newsom told POLITICO that he was on board and that FOX had sent a formal request for participation on dates in early November for a live, one-and-a-half-hour televised forum without an in-studio audience. Newsom’s office proposed that the debate occur in Nevada, Georgia, or North Carolina.
Recently, DeSantis fell further behind on the campaign trail than former President Donald Trump. FiveThirtyEight aggregate polling for the 2024 Republican presidential primary shows Trump at about 53.4% and DeSantis at 15.6%. DeSantis has hoped to revive his campaign with new policy planks, including a 10-point economic plan to decrease reliance on China and a plan to stop the politicization of the military. Despite this, Trump maintains about a 40-point lead over DeSantis and won’t be debating at the upcoming Republican National Committee FOX-hosted primary debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
While DeSantis will be able to distinguish himself from fellow Republicans, going against political adversaries may prove a better strategy to regain his campaign momentum. In an interview, Megyn Kelly advised that his campaign should face adversarial media. DeSantis has now appeared on CNN’s Jake Tapper, and debating Newsom may prove even more beneficial.
A matchup between DeSantis and Newsom will prove entertaining to watch, regardless of the political ramifications that it could have on the Republican primary. With only a few months before the first primary elections, candidates will continue to pursue optics they believe can win them votes.
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