Donald Trump welcomed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to the Republican presidential race with a series of increasingly bizarre posts on his various social media channels.
The former president posted a video attacking DeSantis as an ingrate who owes his career to Trump. He posted another of what appears to be a SpaceX rocket falling over and exploding with “Ron! 2024” over it.
And he shared a weird video mocking DeSantis’ entry via a glitchy Twitter event hosted by Elon Musk.
In Trump’s version, the participants include not just Musk and DeSantis but also Adolf Hitler, the devil, a coughing Dick Cheney, billionaire George Soros, World Economic Forum founder Klaus Schwab and an FBI agent openly plotting to “take out” Trump.
The video concludes with a fake ― perhaps AI ― Trump voice unleashing insults.
“The devil, I’m gonna kick your ass very soon. Hitler, you’re already dead. Dick Cheney, sounds like you’ll be joining Hitler very soon,” the Trump voice says. “Ron DeSanctimonious can kiss my big, beautiful 2024 presidential ass.”
The bizarre video was posted on Trump’s official Instagram and Truth Social pages but widely shared by others on Twitter:
Trump also fired off a series on insults aimed at DeSantis on his Truth Social website, including one in which he compared sizes.
That’s a reference to a 2018 tweet by Trump warning that his nuclear launch button “is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”
DeSantis at one point appeared to be a legitimate threat to Trump’s third run for the presidency, with polls showing him catching up the former president.
One poll in January even had DeSantis with a lead over Trump.
His star has since faded, with more recent polls showing the Florida governor behind by double digits ― including a recent Quinnipiac poll that has the Florida governor down by nearly 30 percentage points.
“His whole campaign will be a disaster,” Trump predicted Wednesday on Truth Social. “WATCH!”