Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis responded on Wednesday after former President Donald Trump suggested he was guilty of “grooming” teen girls. A meme that circulated on Trump’s Truth Social platform showed a person alleged to be DeSantis holding a beer. He was surrounded by a group of females whose faces had been blurred out. “Here is Ron DeSanctimonious grooming high school girls with alcohol as a teacher,” the meme said. Trump shared the post Tuesday with a comment: “That’s not Ron, is it? He would never do such a thing!” Trump has referred to DeSantis as “Ron DeSanctimonious” in his attacks on a potential political rival. Earlier this month, he called DeSantis a “RINO GLOBALIST” in a Truth Social post. The governor, who has won the support of many conservatives with his strong stands on issues such as LGBT indoctrination in schools, is seen as a top challenger to Trump in the 2024 presidential race should he choose to run. During an event Wednesday in Ocala, Florida, DeSantis was asked about the former president’s “grooming” Truth Social post in relation to defamation law. He responded he would rather work for his state’s citizens than attack his fellow Republicans. “I get you guys want the controversy,” DeSantis told reporters. “I face defamatory stuff every single day I’ve been governor,” he said. “That’s just the nature of it.” DeSantis added, “I’d also just say this: I spend my time delivering results for the people of Florida and fighting against Joe Biden.” “That’s how I spend my time,” he said as many in attendance applauded. “I don’t spend my time trying to smear other Republicans.”
It is not clear where the meme accusing DeSantis of grooming teenagers originated, but the smear appears to be baseless. He and Trump appear to be the favorites in next year’s GOP primary race, with different polls showing both men leading in hypothetical matchups. The governor has not offered any indication if he intends to seek the presidency, however. DeSantis cruised to re-election in November by nearly 20 points in a race that essentially shored up Florida as a reliable red state. Trump has gone on the record numerous times to say his endorsement of DeSantis in the 2018 gubernatorial race was just enough to help the now-governor win. DeSantis defeated then-Democratic nominee Andrew Gillum by a razor-thin margin. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
BREAKING: DeSantis responds to Trump ReTruth accusing him of being a “groomer”“I’d just say this. I spend my time delivering results for the people of Florida and fighting against Joe Biden […] I don’t spend my time trying to smear other Republicans.” pic.twitter.com/Ddj9Mb1MYj — Florida’s Voice (@FLVoiceNews) February 8, 2023