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DeSantis says he regrets shunning the media

Florida Governor admitted he should have been ‘blanketing’ major network shows to reach ‘broader’ range of voters

Mike Bedigan
Los Angeles
Friday 19 January 2024 19:18 GMT
Ron DeSantis celebrates second place in Iowa caucuses

Ron DeSantis has said he now regrets shunning mainstream media appearances in the early stages of his campaign to earn the Republican presidential nomination.

The Florida Governor admitted he should have been “blanketing” major network shows to reach a “broader” range of primary voters.

Mr DeSantis scored a narrow victory over Nikki Haley in the Iowa caucuses on Monday, though he lagged far behind Donald Trump – the clear frontrunner in the race.

The trio next head to New Hampshire for the state primary next week.

State polling from FiveThirtyEight currently puts Mr DeSantis at 5.2 per cent of the vote, far below both Ms Haley and Mr Trump, who sit at 34.3 per cent and 48 per cent, respectively.

Speaking to conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Thursday morning, Mr De Santis said he had missed an opportunity to get a better start early on in his campaign.

The Florida Governor admitted he should have been ‘blanketing’ major network shows in order to reach a ‘broader’ range of demographics (ABC)

"I came in not doing too much media, I should have just been blanketing,” he said. “I should have gone on all the corporate shows, I should have gone on everything.

“I started doing that as we got into the end of the summer and we did it but we had an opportunity, I think, to come out of the gate and do that and reach a much broader folk.”

Mr DeSantis was generally hostile to the mainstream media, shunning interviews and sticking mostly to engaging with right-wing outlets at the outset of his presidential campaign.

But the Florida Governor began to change his strategy during the summer when it became clear that he was falling behind Mr Trump.

“Now, I’m everywhere,” Mr DeSantis told Hewitt, adding how he’ll now take questions from the press at his events and engage with the outlets he previously accused of bias against Republicans.

“I mean, I’ll show up wherever,” he said. “Now I’m the only one who is not running a basement campaign.”

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