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DeSantis denies wearing heels after being confronted with viral video

‘Those are just standard off-the-rack Lucchese,’ governor says about his boots

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Thursday 02 November 2023 19:39 GMT
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DeSantis denies wearing heels after being confronted with pictures during interview

Ron DeSantis has denied wearing heels amid rampant social media speculation over the structure of his footwear.

The Florida governor and 2024 candidate was confronted with a viral video of his appearance on comedian Bill Maher’s HBO programme during an interview on the Patrick Bet-David podcast.

“What they’re trying to say with this – in your boots, you have heels,” the podcaster said.

“No, those are just standard off-the-rack Lucchese” boots, Mr DeSantis responded.

Asked how tall he is, the governor said he’s 5’11” (180cm).

“Why don’t you wear tennis shoes and dress shoes?” Mr Bet-David asked.

“I do wear tennis shoes when I work out,” Mr DeSantis said.

Mr Bet-David then tried to give Mr DeSantis a pair of Ferragamo shoes, but the governor said he’s unable to accept gifts.

Three shoemakers recently told Politico that Mr DeSantis is probably wearing height boosters, with each guessing that about 1.5” (3.8cm) has been added to the governor’s stance.

On TikTok and on Twitter, videos mocking the governor’s oddly shaped boots have gone viral as users speculate that he’s trying to look taller next to his top rival, Donald Trump.

Mr Trump claims to be 6’3” (190cm) but appeared to be the same height as former President Barack Obama, who is 6’1” (185cm), when they stood next to each other on the day of Mr Trump’s inauguration on 20 January 2017.

First Lady Melania Trump, President Donald Trump former President Barack Obama and Michelle on the East front steps of the US Capitol after inauguration ceremonies on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC (AFP via Getty Images)

Zephan Parker of Parker Boot Company told Politico, “I’ve dealt with these politicians many times. I’ve helped them with their lifts. [DeSantis] is wearing lifts; there’s no doubt.”

The DeSantis campaign has rejected the notion that Mr DeSantis is wearing height boosters.

Mr Parker noted to Politico that wearing lifts in cowboy boots may “turn them into five-inch stilettos”.

“That’s too much for the common man. So on a ready-made boot, they’ll cut down the heel about half an inch to accommodate the lifts, which looks to be what happened here,” he added.

The bootmaker also noted that the shafts of Mr DeSantis’s boots appear to be wider than normal to make room for height boosters.

“He looks like he’s wearing trousers with an eight-inch opening, which is plenty of room for a Western boot on a man of his proportions,” Mr Parker said, referring to a photo of the governor speaking at an event in Tampa.

He added that the tops of the boots push against Mr DeSantis’s trouser legs indicating that “the boots are bigger than intended, probably to accommodate his lifts”.

“In the photo of him sitting on the wooden stool, you can see where the ball of his foot is protruding on the right boot,” Austin bootmaker Graham Ebner told the outlet. “It’s a good inch behind where it should be. It should not be in that position unless the heels were being lifted dramatically.”

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