Donald Trump told supporters at his Miami, Florida rally on Sunday to re-elect Ron DeSantis as their governor – one day after bashing the popular GOP leader as ‘Ron De-Sanctimonious.’

He said Floridians ‘are going to re-elect a great friend of mine, Marco Rubio‘ in two days when Americans head to the polls on November 8. Rubio is facing a challenge to his Senate seat from House Democratic Rep. Val Demings.

‘You’re going to elect DeSantis as your governor,’ he added to cheers from the crowd. It was the first and only time Trump mentioned the governor during his lengthy speech.

On the other side of the aisle, Trump also seemed to reference House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the recent break-in of her house, that resulted in her 82-year-old husband being brutally attacked with a hammer by an intruder who allegedly espoused QAnon beliefs.

‘Crazy Nancy Pelosi, how’s she doing lately?’ the ex-president asked sarcastically. He also called on voters to ‘fire’ her from the House Speakership, a line echoed by most of Sunday’s rally speakers. 

He took the stage 40 minutes early, much to the apparent surprise of rally-goers and the crowd.

Trump told rally-goers at the Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition Center in reference to Democrats in general, ‘You have to crush the communists,’ noting that he’s ratcheted up his rhetoric from calling the left ‘socialists.’

‘The communist and Marxist direction of the radical Democrat Party is one of the biggest reasons that…Americans are joining our movement,’ Trump said.

It comes as Republicans have experienced a last-minute surge in momentum heading into the Tuesday elections, with RealClearPolitics projecting a decisive GOP victory in the House of Representatives and possibly a win in the Senate.

Supporters packed in at the outdoor Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition Center despite the rainy weather

Supporters packed in at the outdoor Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition Center despite the rainy weather

If they clinch majorities in both houses of Congress, Trump said on Sunday, the GOP ‘must immediately force the restoration of our southern border.’

He went a step further, calling on the number of Customs and Border Patrol agents and ICE officers to be ‘doubled.’

Border security has been among Republicans’ core attack points for Democrats, amid a record surge in migrant encounters at the US border with Mexico.

He also teased his own future 2024 plans while touting the number of voters he received in 2020.

‘I did much better the second time,’ Trump said, referencing the number of votes he got when he lost to President Joe Biden. ‘And now, in order to make our country successful and glorious, I will probably have to do it again.’

Rain began to pour at the end of his over-90-minute speech, but Trump, undeterred, continued.

He said it was probably the best rally he’d ever held.

Trump held his third rally of a four-state swing on Sunday evening, gearing up to take the stage in Miami, Florida just two days before Election Day.

Meanwhile, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis hit three separate counties for his own speaking events  – but will be giving Trump a wide berth in Miami-Dade.

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He was excluded from the litany of GOP figures who spoke before Trump, like Florida Senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, and House Reps. Matt Gaetz, Vern Buchanan and Michael Waltz among others.

DeSantis’ absence is not a surprise given the increasingly hostile relations between the GOP rising star and its de facto party leader. 

At his second of four rallies on Saturday night, Trump mocked DeSantis as ‘Ron De-Sanctimonious’ in Pennsylvania while dismissing a list of potential 2024 Republican challengers.

The popular Republican governor has resisted taking public shots at Trump, perhaps aware of how intertwined their bases are, but has not ruled out the possibility of challenging him in 2024.

Donald Trump mocked Ron DeSantis as 'Ron DeSanctimonious' at a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday night

Donald Trump mocked Ron DeSantis as ‘Ron DeSanctimonious’ at a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday night

While Trump appears in Miami, DeSantis will speak at three rallies closer to Tampa on Sunday

While Trump appears in Miami, DeSantis will speak at three rallies closer to Tampa on Sunday

His reluctance to do so has rankled Trump, who has widely taken credit for DeSantis’ rise to political stardom from being just another House Republican to winning a close race for the Tallahassee governor’s mansion in 2018.

But more recently, DeSantis made a national name for himself with his vocal criticism of the Biden administration’s COVID-19 precautions and other attacks, as well as legislation targeting LGBTQ youth.

The vast majority of early 2024 GOP voter polls have put DeSantis right behind Trump in terms of who Republicans want as their next presidential nominee.

Trump has not yet formally declared his intent to run but he’s dropped several hints making it clear where he leans.

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‘We’re winning big, big, big in the Republican Party for the nomination like nobody’s ever seen before,’ the former president said on Saturday night.

He asked for poll numbers to be put up on the screen above him. 

‘There it is, Trump at 71, Ron DeSanctimonious at 10 percent,’ Trump said derisively.

‘Mike Pence at 7, oh, Mike is doing better than I thought. Liz Cheney there’s no way she’s at 4 percent. There’s no way. There’s no way. But we’re at 71 to 10 to 7 to 4.’

Surprisingly, among the first high profile Republicans to rush to DeSantis’ defense was Mike Pompeo – Trump’s former secretary of state and a potential 2024 contender himself.

‘Not tired of winning. [Governor Ron DeSantis] you’ve proven conservative policies work. Florida is better for it. Vote for [DeSantis].’

Trump’s inner circle has been eyeing November 14 as the expected date for him to announce a third bid for the White House, Axios reported last week.

DeSantis, meanwhile, made the closing arguments for his own re-election bid on Sunday.

He’s running for a second gubernatorial term against Charlie Crist, a House Democrat who previously governed Florida from Tallahassee as a Republican.

Despite staying mum on his presidential ambitions, DeSantis has amassed a massive $200 million war chest for his 2022 re-election bid – an eye-popping sum for a gubernatorial candidate.

His Sunday rallies are part of his ‘Don’t Tread on Florida’ tour. The stops included Lee, Hillsborough and Sarasota counties.


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