“Sad to See” – Ron Desantis Rips Into Donald Trump for Being a “Different Guy” in 2023

Ron DeSantis has been slow to criticize Donald Trump in recent months despite the fact that he’s trailing him in the polls by a wide margin as the 2024 presidential election nears closer. But that appeared to end this week when he took the gloves off and fired a few shots at the former President. He went as far as to say that Trump is no longer the “freewheeling” candidate he was back in 2016.

Ron Desantis Has Been Criticized for Not Being More Critical of Donald Trump

Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump are obviously rivals heading into the 2024 Presidential Election. DeSantis is one of the few Republican candidates who seems to have a chance to dethrone Trump.

But despite this, DeSantis has been surprisingly slow to offer up many criticisms of Trump in recent months, even as Trump has referred to him as “Ron DeSanctimonious” early and often and been very critical of him.

Desantis Decided to Take the Gloves off This Week

It appears as though DeSantis has decided to stop playing nice with Trump, though, as the two start to inch their way closer to the 2024 Presidential Election.

He took aim at Trump during a campaign stop in New Hampshire this week and didn’t pull any punches while doing it.

Desantis Addressed Trump’s Controversial Comments

DeSantis chose to take shots at Trump after hearing the controversial comments the former President made about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Trump claimed Netanyahu “let us down” in 2020 when he took credit for assassinating Qasem Soleimani, who was in charge of leading the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s Quds Force.

Trump also referred to the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah as “smart” and even went as far as to call Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant a “jerk” before reversing course and posting the hashtags #IStandWithIsrael and #IStandWithBibi (Bibi is a nickname used for Netanyahu) on his Truth Social platform.

Desantis Claimed Trump Holds a Grudge Against Netanyahu

While speaking with the press in New Hampshire, DeSantis claimed that Trump attacked Netanyahu in recent days because the Israeli leader congratulated Joe Biden for being elected President back in 2020 even though Trump believed the 2020 Presidential Election was stolen from him.

“That’s the Real Donald Trump”

DeSantis also took things a step further while speaking about Trump. He said that he thinks Trump struggles when he makes off-the-cuff statements rather than sticking to reading what has been written for him off a teleprompter.

“I think we have the Donald Trump on the teleprompter where he’s reading what’s on there, then you have the Donald Trump when he gets off that teleprompter,” DeSantis said, “and that’s the real Donald Trump when he started speaking about those things.”

Desantis Continued to Take Issue With Trump

DeSantis went on to further explain the misstep that Trump made when he decided to criticize Netanyahu this week of all weeks. “He attacked Bibi after [Israel] suffered the worst attack it’s had in its modern history, when they’ve just created a war government, they’re preparing to do a ground invasion in Gaza,” DeSantis said.

“And he did that because Bibi congratulated Biden in November. That’s why he did it. He hates Netanyahu because of that. That’s about him. That’s not about the greater good of what Israel’s trying to do or American security.” 

Desantis Offered Advice to Trump

DeSantis took the time to provide Trump with some words of wisdom, though you could argue that his advice could potentially help DeSantis more than it would help Trump. “I would say get rid of your teleprompter,” DeSantis said. “Don’t use that as a crutch.”

DeSantis also invited Trump to show up for a Republican debate, which he has failed to do thus far. “Go to debates,” he said. “Show up and debate for two hours, and then we’ll be able to see where he’s really coming from.”

Desantis Kept on Attacking Trump

DeSantis must have sensed at least some weakness from Trump and his camp this week because he didn’t hold back as he stayed on the offensive and continued to take additional shots at Trump.

He reiterated his point about Trump’s reliance on a teleprompter yet again prior to parting ways with the press.

“We’ve seen over the course of every interview, every time he’s gotten off the teleprompter for, like, the last two months, they’ve had to clean things up for what he’s saying,” DeSantis said.

Desantis Suggested the 2023 Version of Trump Is “Different”

To close things out, DeSantis offered a comparison of the 2016 version of Trump versus the 2023 version. He said they’re like night and day, with the 2023 version being much “different” than the 2016 one.

“This is a different Donald Trump,” DeSantis said. “In 2016, he was freewheeling; he’s out there barnstorming the country, doing all this. Now, it’s just a different guy.”

Desantis Ended With His Harshest Criticism of Trump Yet

DeSantis laid out his fair share of criticisms for Trump in New Hampshire. But after referring to him as a “different guy” in 2023 than he was in 2016, he may have lobbed his hardest-hitting shot at Trump.

DeSantis finished his assault on Trump by saying that it has been “sad to see” what he has become since leaving office. Trump has yet to respond to that particular comment, but it could be the one that ultimately gets under his skin the most.

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