Gov. Ron DeSantis is downplaying recent straw polls showing him as a leading presidential prospect in 2024.
DeSantis has outperformed former President Donald Trump in a number of such informal surveys at various events in recent weeks, a phenomenon leading to an increasing amount of stories on the seeming trend.
As he has done when asked about a desire to run for President in 2024, DeSantis sidestepped the question.
“I don’t do straw polls. They just put my name into these things, you know? It’s just, like, so what am I supposed to do? Like they sell merchandise and everything. I kind of would like to get royalties on that,” DeSantis quipped Wednesday in Fort Myers Beach.
DeSantis continues to demonstrate a national reach with the most passionate partisans in the party as a potential alternative to the former President.
Last weekend, the Western Conservative Summit 2024 straw poll in Colorado saw 71% approval for a DeSantis run, four points ahead of Trump. No other candidate drew even 30% support, suggesting that DeSantis continues to consolidate the “anybody but Trump” lane.
The event, associated with Colorado Christian University, is the second recent straw poll conducted far away from the Sunshine State to show DeSantis topping Trump.
A poll of 325 attendees at the Wisconsin Republican Convention, reported by WisPolitics.com, saw DeSantis receive 38% of the vote in a hypothetical 2024 GOP field that included over two dozen potential candidates. Trump was six points behind the Governor.
Closer to home, a Jacksonville straw poll held by the conservative radio station WBOB, which included over 700 respondents, saw DeSantis top Trump, 53% to 47%.
Formal polling of a potential race, meanwhile, shows Trump is still atop the hypothetical 2024 horse race. The Club for Growth told the New York Times’ Maggie Haberman that Trump won “handily” in a series of statewide head-to-head polls of a potential Primary matchup with DeSantis.