Portrait of Ron DeSantis

DeSantis Campaign Press Release - Ron DeSantis: "If Donald Trump can summon the balls to show up to the debate, I'll wear a boot on my head."

November 02, 2023

"This is no time for foot fetishes. We've got serious problems as a country."

Tallahassee, FL - Ron DeSantis spoke with Newsmax's Eric Bolling today to challenge Trump to debate on the issues that matter to the American people instead of obsessing over footwear.

Watch the clip here.

Look Eric, this is no time for foot fetishes. We've got serious problems as a country. We've got war in the Middle East, we've got terrorists coming across our own southern border, we have an American dream that's out of reach for millions of Americans because of the Bidenflation and the high energy prices. We've got schools that are indoctrinating kids and not educating kids, and we've got cities that are being overrun by crime.

I know people want to try to divert on to other issues. I know Donald Trump and a lot of his people have been focusing on things like footwear, I'll tell you this if Donald Trump can summon the balls to show up to the debate, I'll wear a boot on my head.

This is a time for substance. This is a time for us to debate the issues that matter to the American people. And the question is: Are you able to fight for them? Which we have done in Florida. Are you able to win those fights? We have been able to do in Florida. And are you able to lead to a better tomorrow? We've done that in Florida, and we'll do that for the United States of America.

Watch the full interview here. Additional highlights from the interview below.

On the threat of China and Iran to the US:

I think you deal with people like ran through a position of strength. If you look at what Biden did when he came in, he relaxed oil sanctions on Iran. That gave them tens of billions of dollars flowing into the regime's coffers. I would turn the screws on that. I would starve their economy of money. Not just through oil, but also the snapback sanctions. I would marshal our allies to crack down on money going into Iran. Ultimately, that money is the mother's milk of Middle Eastern terrorism. We also have to look at China as being one of their main benefactors. China's buying billions of dollars worth of black market oil sales. We just rolled out our National Security Strategy last week showing that when I'm President, we're going to view China as the US's top threat, and we've got to get that one right otherwise the other stuff is not going to matter...

...So first, I think China represents the biggest threat of all those. I think Russia is basically a patron of China. Iran is basically a patron of China. Of course, North Korea depends on China. So you have to do it, one, military strength. We're going to bolster our defenses in the Pacific. I'm calling for more naval ships to deny their ability to realize their ambitions there. We're also going to do economic. We have become dependent on China for all important things in our economy almost. We need to decouple that relationship. That will be better for our security. It will not be good for China's economy. And then we've got to get serious about the cultural impact they have in the United States. I banned China from buying land in the Sunshine State. We got them out of our universities. They should not be able to be involved in that anywhere in this country. And then finally I'd say, Eric, we need to be energy dominant. Let's use our resources, oil, gas. That's bad for Russia, bad for Iran, and bad for China. The Green New Deal of Biden benefits all of those bad actors.

On his objection to blank checks:

It's got to be tied to advancing US interests, which this operation to eliminate Hamas would be, and that has got to be the justification. So, I don't support blank checks in any situation. She, of course, Nikki Haley supports a blank check to Ukraine, even though they've given Ukraine over $120 billion in less than two years. We've done $158 billion to Israel in 75 years of its existence. And yet, Biden and many of these people, you know, they want to do eventually hundreds of billions more, I think, on that. So, you have a responsibility to look after taxpayer dollars. Don't just send things willy nilly. Make sure it's tied to that objective. But I do support doing what we need to do to make sure that Israel can achieve this objective because I think it's an important military objective. I think it will help us in the Middle East to have a strong Israel. They're the only ally we could depend on through thick or thin, and this is an existential threat to their existence to have a terrorist group that wants to massacre babies and take people hostage like they have.

On how the US should support Israel:

Of course not. I mean to do a massive omnibus package is absolutely not the right way to go. So we need to support Israel in word and in deed, publicly and privately, and that means supporting their right to defend themselves, which means in this case, they have to eliminate the threat posed by Hamas. And that means eliminate the tunnels, the infrastructures, eliminate the organization. They can't live when you have a terrorist organization that wants to massacre every Jew in Israel. It's just not something you can coexist with. So they have every right to do that. It should be, like the House is doing though, it should be done mindful of the fact that we're $33-plus trillion dollars in debt. The house is taking money from the IRS to be able to give to Israel because we've got to stop adding so much debt. So I think they've been really responsible. It's also important we say no taxpayer money to the Gaza strip. That will be commandeered by Hamas. Hamas is holding Americans hostage now, as well as many other nationalities including Israelis hostage. If you're concerned about humanitarian assistance for Gaza civilians, then you should be calling for the complete and unconditional surrender of Hamas. You should be calling for them to release all the hostages. I don't see the left and I don't see the media doing any of that. And it's also important that we point out, and I've said very clearly, we cannot do what people like AOC want to do, which is import hundreds of thousands of Gaza refugees. Egypt should be taking them, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon, they won't take any of these folks. You don't want to import that into the United States. People say not everyone's a member of Hamas, and I think that's true, but in the Gaza Strip, they teach all the kids to hate Jews. In the textbooks they don't have Israel even listed on the map at all. And they believe in eradicating Israel. They don't believe Israel has a right to exist as a Jewish state. So we've seen all the antisemitism in our country bubble to the surface in ways that I, honestly, was surprised about, and I'm somebody in Florida, we've actually done legislation to combat antisemitism on college campuses. But you have people openly calling for the annihilation of Israel at places like Harvard and Penn and all these places. So we've got problems in our own country, and I think importing more problems is not going to help solve.

Ron DeSantis, DeSantis Campaign Press Release - Ron DeSantis: "If Donald Trump can summon the balls to show up to the debate, I'll wear a boot on my head." Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/367745

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