WATCH: Ron DeSantis Crosses the 2020 Rubicon, Says 'Of Course' Trump Lost the Election

AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File

The problem with the GOP primary is Donald Trump. His legal problems, his 2020 claims, and the cult of personality that surrounds him are all making it hard for other voices and ideas to come through.


So, if a candidate has a sit-down interview with a journalist, they are going to be bombarded with questions not about policy but about Trump.

In a clip provided by The Today Show, DeSantis is badgered by NBC’s Dasha Burns to talk about Trump and the 2020 election, eventually pulling a big answer out of DeSantis. When she says he won’t answer if Trump lost the election, DeSantis snaps and says “Of course he lost” followed by “Joe Biden is the President.”

Here is a clip of the interview.

To be frank, I’m pretty wary of the interview until the whole thing is published, not this jump-cut-ridden news package. But the context does seem pretty clear: DeSantis acknowledges that Trump lost the election, an acknowledgment that comes as Trump is being prosecuted for making claims to the contrary.

“Whoever puts their hand on the Bible on Jan. 20 every four years is the winner,” DeSantis told NBC News correspondent Dasha Burns in his first broadcast network interview since he launched his presidential campaign.

DeSantis continued to discuss all the ways he believed the previous presidential election was not perfect. But pressed further, he clearly stated that Trump lost.

“But respectfully, you did not clearly answer that question,” Burns said. “And if you can’t give a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on whether or not he lost —”

“No, of course he lost,” DeSantis said, adding, “Joe Biden’s the president.”


The interview also comes after a weekend event in Iowa on Friday, where DeSantis dismissed theories that the election was stolen. The rhetoric comes as DeSantis is trying to shift away from some of the woke/social justice campaigning and focus more on his predecessor as well as the current occupant of the White House.

“I think what people in the media and elsewhere, they want to act like somehow this was just like the perfect election. … I don’t think it was a good-run election,” DeSantissaid. “But I also think Republicans didn’t fight back. You’ve got to fight back when that is happening.”

But DeSantis also took aim at Trump, saying he set the stage for his own loss by signing the CARES Act, a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus bill in response to the Covid-19 crisis. About $400 million of that money went to help states with election administration — and many states made voting by mail morewidely available during the pandemic.

“But here’s the issue that I think is important for Republican voters to think about: Why did we have all those mail votes? Because of Trump turned the government over to Fauci,” DeSantis said, referring to Dr. Anthony Fauci, a leader of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. “They embraced lockdowns. They did the CARES Act, which funded mail-in ballots across the country.”


DeSantis is currently running second place behind Trump. In Iowa, the most recent polling has the former president up 24 points over DeSantis.


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