Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, the 2024 Republican presidential candidate, said Saturday he would consider Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds as his running mate, while criticizing recent complaints about her by former President Donald Trump.
Asked if he would consider Reynolds as a possible vice-presidential pick if he wins the Republican nomination, DeSantis said: «Of course.»
«I mean, she’s one of the top public servants in the United States,» she told reporters at a fundraising event in Ankeny, Iowa.
DeSantis also dismissed Trump’s criticism of Reynolds: «I thought the attacks on her were totally out of control and totally unnecessary.»
Contacted by NBC News for comment on DeSantis’ comments, Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said: «Ron DeSantis is totally out of control.»
Trump, who leads DeSantis by a Wide margin in national polls, last week he expressed his frustration with Reynolds for refusing to endorse a candidate in the initial race for the Republican nomination. in a mail On his Truth Social platform, the former president suggested that Reynolds is endorsing DeSantis, despite his vow to uphold a rule among Iowa governors to remain neutral throughout the closely watched presidential primary in the swing state.
“Opened the Governorship for Kim Reynolds, and when she fell behind, I SUPPORTED HER, did big rallies, and she won,” Trump wrote.
“Now, she wants to remain ‘NEUTRAL.’ I don’t invite her to events! DeSanctus is down 45 points!” she added, referring to DeSantis, his main rival for the party’s nomination.
Days earlier, the New York Times, citing people close to Reynolds and DeSantis, had reported that the two governors “forged a bond” at the height of the coronavirus pandemic and that one of Reynolds’ top advisers, Ryan Koopmans, also advises the pro-DeSantis super PAC.
DeSantis also expressed his support for Reynolds in Twitter last week, calling the Iowa governor «a strong leader who knows how to ignore the squeaks and get it done.»
“She got a landslide re-election because she got great results and she’s ready to give Iowans even more in the special session,” DeSantis added.
Senator Ted Cruz defeated Trump to win the Iowa Republican caucuses in 2016, but Trump won the general election. The former president also won the 2020 Republican Party caucuses and presidential elections in Iowa.
The Republican Party announced this month that it will hold its caucuses on January 15.