Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has weighed in on the age factor in the presidential race, suggesting that the presidency is not a suitable role for individuals who are pushing 80 years old. DeSantis, aged 45, made these comments as he sought to draw a contrast between his youth and the ages of former President Donald Trump, 77, and President Joe Biden, who turns 81 on Monday.
During an appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union” with Jake Tapper, DeSantis stated, “I just think that that’s something that has been shown with Joe Biden. Father Time is undefeated. Donald Trump is not exempt from any of that.”
The Florida governor highlighted that he is currently in the “prime of my life” and pointed out that if Trump were to take office in 2025, he would be older than Biden was at the beginning of his term.
The issue of age has become a central theme in the lead-up to the 2024 presidential race. Trump has consistently mocked Biden and questioned his mental fitness for office, while DeSantis’ campaign has launched an “accident tracker” highlighting apparent verbal slips by Trump.
DeSantis also expressed his belief that Trump is not the same as when he first ran for president, alluding to Trump’s verbal gaffes on the campaign trail. When asked about Trump’s mental acuity and ability to defeat Biden in a general election, DeSantis stated, “I wouldn’t be running unless I thought that the Democrats would beat Trump if he were the nominee.”
DeSantis predicts that if Trump secures the GOP nomination, Democrats will go on the offensive, making the entire election a referendum on Donald Trump. He suggests that Biden would be able to avoid the spotlight and “get away with it again.”
One Iowa voter, John Walker, who previously voted for Trump, expressed agreement with DeSantis’ comments about age and the presidency. Walker appreciated DeSantis’ focus on the possibility of serving two terms and not being immediately labeled a lame duck.
DeSantis, facing declining poll numbers, has maintained a rigorous campaign schedule. He often appears at events with his wife and three young children, presenting himself as a youthful and energetic candidate who can deliver results and move the country forward.