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Bill Maher grills DeSantis on path to defeat Trump: If things were going well, ‘you wouldn’t be on this show’

“Real Time” host Bill Maher grilled Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on his uphill battle to defeat former President Trump in the GOP primary. 

“You did not take my advice,” Maher began the exchange on Friday. “I was on the show- a few times we talked- I said, ‘this guy’s crazy to run this time. He’s- what are you, 45 years old? You just had a birthday, right?”

“Yeah,” DeSantis said.

“You could run for the next 20 years. If you were Biden, the next 40,” Maher quipped. “Why run against Trump? You’re trying to thread this needle that will never happen. You can’t disavow him because that’s the base, and yet you’re running against him. And that’s why, I mean, let’s face it Ron, if the campaign was going well, you wouldn’t be on this show.”

“Oh that’s not true,” DeSantis reacted. “One: I don’t think he can win the election. I could win the election. Two: I don’t think he could actually get the job done that we need to do, For example, COVID. I think we need accountability for what this government did to this country with the COVID restrictions mandates and lockdowns. Donald Trump is not gonna do that… He’s not going to clean house at CDC, NIH, FDA. I will do that. I will get the job done.” 

 

DeSantis was center stage at Wednesday’s Republican debate as the leading candidate who participated in the political showdown, polling roughly 14% according to the RealClearPolitics average of polls. 

While he is maintaining his lead among his non-Trump rivals, he has lost a lot of ground over the course of the year, peaking at over 30% support in March. Despite his absence from the debates so far, Trump has kept his commanding lead, averaging roughly 58% support. 

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Joseph A. Wulfsohn is a media reporter for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to joseph.wulfsohn@fox.com and on Twitter: @JosephWulfsohn.

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