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DeSantis to Newsom: 'Stop pussyfooting around' over 2024 presidential bid

"Why don’t you throw your hat in the ring, and then we’ll go ahead and talk about what’s happening," the governor said.

Published: June 15, 2023 3:48pm

Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has called on California Gov. Gavin Newsom to reach a decision about a potential 2024 presidential bid after the Democrat challenged him to a debate.

The pair have increasingly traded barbs in recent months amid the Florida Republican's challenge to former President Donald Trump and rumors that Newsom may enter the Democratic primary. Newsom has denied any such intent but recently appeared on Fox News's "Hannity" during which he expressed a willingness to debate his Republican counterpart one-on-one.

During a press conference on Thursday, DeSantis responded to the prospect of a debate with Newsom, telling him to "[s]top pussyfooting around," The Hill reported. "Are you going to throw your hat in the ring and challenge Joe? Are you going to do it?  Or are you going to sit on the sidelines and chirp?"

"Why don’t you throw your hat in the ring, and then we’ll go ahead and talk about what’s happening," he added, saying Newsom "has a real, serious fixation on Florida."

He went on to point to the mass exodus of residents from California as a symptom of major issues plaguing the state.

DeSantis currently stands as the second-place candidate in the Republican primary, behind Trump, with the former commander-in-chief holding an average 30.4% lead, according to RealClearPolitics.

Biden, for his part, already faces two primary challengers in the form of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Marianne Williamson.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.

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