In a surprising turn of events, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has picked up support for his presidential from former President Donald Trump’s allies and supporters.
Several of Trump’s previous supporters are backing DeSantis’s challenge to the former President’s 2024 GOP presidential nomination; these are five %of the most prominent.
Former Senior Trump Administration official Cuccinelli, who served as Homeland Security’s acting deputy secretary, is among the most vocal and upfront ex-Trump supporters to shift support to DeSantis.
Cuccinelli launched the “Never Back Down” super PAC in March to encourage DeSantis to run for President. At the time he launched, he shared he had spoken to “many grassroots conservative activists” who yearned for DeSantis to run.
Earlier in May, Never Back Down revealed that Republican Rep. Bob Good (Va.) is endorsing DeSantis because he has shown he can deliver “effective results for every man, woman, and child.”
At the time, he shared his expectation that DeSantis would win the presidential election if he decided to run.
“Courageous conservative leadership is what America needs,” Good asserted at the time, suggesting DeSantis would “stand up” to the madness of woke corporations, corrupt politicians in Washington, and the continued attacks on faith, families, and freedoms.
Good had received an endorsement from Trump in his 2020 race and backed Trump’s reelection bid but shared that DeSantis has shown “strength in the face of adversity.”
In 2016 and 2020, Steve Cortes served as a senior adviser to Trump’s presidential campaigns, but he now works as an adviser to Never Back Down.
He backed DeSantis earlier in May, describing him as “the best possible option to win the presidency” in 2024.
In an op-ed in Newsweek, Cortes suggested he did not arrive at his decision to support DeSantis lightly, given he had served as a spokesperson and adviser to the former President for most of the past seven years, but added that the “America First movement” was bigger than any one individual.
In March, Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) became the first sitting member of Congress to endorse DeSantis for President.
Roy’s show of support came more than two months before DeSantis would officially announce his entry into the 2024 Presidential race.
Roy was also one of a few House members to preemptively endorse DeSantis.
In an email to his supporters, Roy insisted that the next president “must be a vibrant and energetic leader with the faith, vision, and courage to chart a new course.”
In 2020, Roy was one of several House Representatives who tried to help Trump Overturn the election results, sending a letter to then-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows to help with Trump’s legal challenges to the election results, according to texts obtained by CNN.
Republican Rep. Thomas Massie (Ky.) supported Trump during the 2020 election despite not always being on the best terms with Trump in the past few years.
In April, Massie muddied the friendship further by endorsing.
Trump slammed Massie as a “third rate grandstander” and urged the Republican Party to kick him out in 2020 over Massie’s opposition to the $2 trillion COVID-19 relief package passed at the outset of the pandemic.
However, despite the disparaging remarks in 2020, when Massie sought reelection in 2022, Trump endorsed him, describing him as a “Conservative Warrior” and “first-rate Defender of the Constitution,” with Massie saying he didn’t expect that.
Massie became the second House Republican to preemptively endorse DeSantis for 2024, saying that DeSantis is a “proven energetic leader” who has fought for economic freedom, fiscal responsibility, personal liberty, and limited government.