Former President Donald Trump is scheduled to visit the Iowa State Fair Saturday with nine House Republicans from Florida who chose to endorse him over their state’s governor Ron DeSantis.
Trump’s campaign confirmed to the Des Moines Register that Florida Reps. Gus Bilirakis, Byron Donalds, Matt Gaetz, Carlos Gimenez, Brian Mast, Cory Mills, Anna Paulina Luna, Greg Steube and Mike Waltz will all be traveling with Trump to the state fair and will be with him throughout the day. One member of Florida’s Republican congressional delegation has endorsed her state’s governor over Trump – Rep. Laura Lee, who used to serve as DeSantis’ secretary of state.
The Florida governor as well as several other 2024 GOP hopefuls are also expected to be at the big Iowa event over the weekend.
Despite his latest criminal indictment, Trump is still finding time to troll the candidate believed to be his only serious rival on the campaign trail. And it’s not the first time the two have very obviously used traditional early-voting campaign stops to snub one another.
In June — as 2024 candidates started visiting the critical early voting state of New Hampshire — Trump and DeSantis held competing events.
On a Tuesday morning, DeSantis held a town hall in Hollis just before Trump headlined the New Hampshire Federation of Republican Women’s (NHFRW) Lilac Luncheon in Concord, an hour north of Hollis.
The NHFRW issued a statement, saying it was disappointed with the DeSantis campaign for scheduling a town hall around the same time as its own event — 40 miles away.
Trump also addressed the issue during his speech.
DeSantis is “holding an event right now, which is considered not nice,” Trump told the luncheon crowd.
The escalating Trump-Desantis tension comes as the former president tries to navigate his multiple ongoing and rapidly mounting legal battles; indictments that he is also fundraising off of.
Trump pleaded not guilty last Thursday to four criminal counts brought forward by special counsel Jack Smith related to the former president’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
In June, the former president entered another not guilty plea for the 37 counts he is facing in the Department of Justice’s Mar-a-Lago classified documents case.
Georgia’s Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is also expected to announce charging decisions in her investigation into efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the state’s 2020 presidential election result by September 1.