Kevin McCarthy Predicts DeSantis Won’t Win GOP Nomination: ‘He’s Not at the Same Level as Trump’

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) on Sunday discussed the 2024 presidential election with Fox News host Maria Bartiromo. During the interview, he indicated that he believed former President Donald Trump would secure the GOP nomination and had some rather choice criticism for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is also seeking the nod.


Bartiromo brought up Trump’s considerable lead in the polls despite all of the politically motivated indictments Democrats have filed against him. “What's your take on this that as we see more indictments of Donald Trump, he seems to be gaining in terms of popularity with the public? Will he be the nominee?” she asked.

McCarthy answered in the affirmative, noting that Trump “is stronger today than he was in 2016 or 2020.” He explained that this was because the American people “saw the policies of what he was able to do with America, putting America first, making our economy stronger. We didn’t have inflation, we didn’t have these battles around the world, we didn’t look weak.”

Bartiromo then brought up Gov. DeSantis, noting that he is trying to work with Republican lawmakers who are “pushing for a [government] shutdown.”

McCarthy pushed back, saying that such a move would not “work anywhere” and that “a shutdown would only give strength to the Democrats.”

The Speaker then explained why he believes Trump will eventually become the GOP nominee over DeSantis.

He's stronger than he has ever been in this process. Look, I served with Ron DeSantis. He's not at the same level as President Trump by any shape or form. He would not have gotten elected without President Trump's endorsement. I believe our best step forward, pass our appropriation bills so we're stronger. Take the wokeism out, secure our border to make America stronger.


McCarthy discussed a wide range of issues in his conversation with Bartiromo. He announced that House Republicans would be issuing a subpoena for Hunter Biden in connection with the impeachment inquiry at some point. He emphasized that Republicans want to gather more information before calling Hunter before Congress.

The one thing the American public has to understand is there's a strategy behind everything. We only follow the facts. Hunter Biden will get subpoenaed, but when's the appropriate time? Do you do it because television wants it? Or do you do it around the facts and the timing?...

I think we should have the bank statements to actually know where did the money go so you would know the questions to ask Hunter Biden. To just subpoena Hunter Biden because you want to fundraise or you want to do something, that's not how you run it effectively.

DeSantis has remained in a distant second place to the former president, who maintains a healthy lead. He recently criticized Trump over his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“He seems to be saying he would do the same thing all over again.”

“With me as president, if we have these set of circumstances, you're going to have people around me like @FLSurgeonGen, @DrJBhattacharya— I'm going to listen to the people that got it right. But we would NEVER repeat the mistakes of the past…"

“I think one difference between how he and I look at things: he really likes polls. He really cares about polls. He wants to know what he's doing is popular in the moment — and he's obsessed with polling data. I don't give a rip about the polls. “When I was making decisions in Florida, particularly on the front end of COVID, I was getting hammered. My public polling was going down. But at the end of the day, a leader's got to stand up and do what's right.”


According to the most recent RealClearPolitics average, DeSantis currently has 12.7 percent support, which is considerably lower than Trump’s at 56.6 percent.


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