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DeSantis doubles down on vow to ‘slit the throats’ of federal bureaucrats, says it is just ‘colorful’ language

President candidate Gov. Ron DeSantis does not apologize for his promise to “slit the throats” of bureaucrats in the federal government if elected.

The Florida governor was asked by MSNBC’s Willie Geist on Thursday if he regretted using such violent imagery.

“We’re going to have all of these deep state people, you know, we are going to start slitting throats on day one,” DeSantis said during a Q&A session in August.

DeSantis was once solidly in second place in the race for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, but he has seen his numbers in the surveys erode in recent months as former President Trump expanded his lead over the Florida governor. 

The latest presidential power rankings from Fox News shows Trump with a commanding lead but with two candidates in the best position to “reshape” the race with a strong showing in Iowa, DeSantis and former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

The latest Real Clear Politics average shows Trump at 48.8% in Iowa followed by DeSantis at 17.3% and Haley at 11.5%.

Fox News Digital’s Andrew Mark Miller, Paul Steinhauser, Charlie Gasparino, and Anders Hagstrom contributed to this report.

Timothy Nerozzi is a writer for Fox News Digital. You can follow him on Twitter @timothynerozzi and can email him at


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