Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said he’s “not a big social media guy” and “would rather watch” cable TV news “than be on some app” following his glitch-ridden presidential campaign launch on Twitter.
DeSantis, 44, made the comments during a Thursday appearance on Newsmax when asked why he made the highly anticipated announcement that he’s running for president on Twitter rather than a cable news network like Fox.
He cited “the ability to get a lot of people” to tune into the event, as well as owner Elon Musk’s emphasis on Twitter’s “free speech component,” which he called “significant,” especially “given what Twitter and Elon mean for conservatives (and) given how we’ve been censored.”
He continued: “I’m actually not a big social media guy. I would rather watch you [Newsmax host Eric Bolling] than be on some app, but it is important to a lot of people.”
“Really, this is an example of conservatives having a voice again and fighting back against the entrenched legacy media,” he added.
DeSantis launched his bid for president via Twitter Spaces at 6 p.m. May 24, but the audio cut in and out for more than 20 minutes before a new Twitter Space was launched.
“I’ve never seen this before,” Musk said during the outage before launching a new Twitter Space. The dedicated audio streaming feature was launched in May 2021 and allows speakers to host live audio conversations for an audience.
However, Spaces reportedly wasn’t equipped to handle the 400,000 users who tuned in to listen.
“They were very confident that they had the ability to get a lot of people [to listen], and they were anticipating a lot of people, but there were more people that tried to sign up than even what Twitter had anticipated,” DeSantis said.
“I was just in a room in Florida so I didn’t really know necessarily what was going on,” DeSantis added, defending the delay by blaming it on something to do with “Elon’s account.”
DeSantis, however, still claimed that “because Elon was involved — Twitter was involved — we got way more play about it than we would’ve if I would’ve just given a speech.”
Despite the lackluster Twitter launch, DeSantis managed to haul in an impressive $8.2 million within the first 24 hours of his presidential campaign announcement.
The sum dwarfs the $6.3 million raised by Joe Biden in his first 24 hours as a presidential candidate back in 2019.
Former President and fellow GOP candidate Donald Trump took to his own social media app, Truth Social, for a bizarre post in response to DeSantis’ Twitter Spaces appearance.
“‘Rob,’ My Red Button is bigger, better, stronger, and is working (TRUTH!), yours does not! (per my conversation with Kim Jung Un, of North Korea, soon to become my friend!),” read Trump’s baffling post on Wednesday.
The post was later shared by the Trump campaign in an email to supporters.
DeSantis, meanwhile, publicly said the following day that he vowed to “aggressively” look at granting Trump a legal reprieve if the 76-year-old is convicted of a federal crime.
“What I’m going to do is … on day one, I will have folks that will get together and look at all these cases [of] people who are victims of weaponization or political targeting, and we will be aggressive at issuing pardons,” he told the “Clay & Buck” radio show.