WASHINGTON - Could Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis run for president in 2024? That's what Rep. Matt Gaetz hinted at during a Fox News appearance over the weekend.
The Republican congressman appeared on Fox News Sunday following DeSantis' interview on the network earlier in the day.
DeSantis blasted the Biden administration for reportedly considering domestic travel restrictions to areas with a surge of COVID-19 variant cases, including Florida. The governor accused the White House of "targeting" the Sunshine State.
Florida accounts for more than a third of all cases in the country of the B-117 variant, the highly infectious so-called UK strain.
During Gaetz's appearance hours later, he insinuated that the Biden administration was focusing on Florida because DeSantis might run for president himself.
"What Ron DeSantis didn't say, which is the truth, is that the Biden folks know that if Donald Trump is not the candidate in 2024, the leader of our movement will be Ron DeSantis," Gaetz said in the interview.
"He is a strong potential presidential candidate in 2024, the Biden team knows that, and so they're trying to somehow cast aspersions on the Florida experience because you know what, throughout America, there's a lot of Florida envy right now."
However, DeSantis has not yet hinted at a future presidential run. He is up for re-election in 2022.
Last week, DeSantis called the White House travel restriction proposal absurd and potentially unconstitutional.
"We will oppose it 100 percent. It would not be based in science," he said. "It would purely be a political attack against the people of Florida."