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Trump reacts to DeSantis, Newsom at Red State vs Blue State debate: ‘Both worked hard’

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Trump reacts to DeSantis, Newsom at Red State vs Blue State debate: ‘Both worked hard’

Gov Gavin Newsom told Gov Ron DeSantis ‘neither of us will be the nominee for our party in 2024’

Brooke Singman By Brooke Singman Fox News

Published December 1, 2023 11:53am EST

https://static.foxnews.com/mvpd/index.html?v=20231128155304

Hannity: Post Debate

Ron DeSantis, Gavin Newsom, Post Debate

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EXCLUSIVE: Former President Donald Trump reacted to the debate between Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and California Gov. Gavin Newsom, telling Fox News Digital he thinks “they both worked hard and they both did well.” 

Fox News hosted “The Great Red State vs. Blue State Debate,” which was moderated by Sean Hannity on Thursday night.

DeSantis, who is running for president in 2024, and Newsom, who made clear he was not, faced off in a first-of-its kind showdown, clashing on a number of policies related to abortion, crime, taxes and COVID-19.

RED VS BLUE STATE DEBATE HIGHLIGHTS: TOP 5 MOMENTS FROM THE DESANTIS, NEWSOM SLUGFEST

Donald Trump wearing a red make america great again hat

Former President Donald Trump has a commanding lead over the Republican presidential primary field. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

Trump, who has a commanding lead over the Republican presidential primary field, watched the debate.

“I thought it was a very even debate,” Trump said. “They both worked hard and they both did well.”

The former president has had some harsh words for DeSantis along the campaign trail, but did not make any additional comments about the Florida governor.

NEWSOM, DESANTIS DEBATE GETS HEATED OVER COVID, TAX POLICIES: ‘YOU DID A LOT OF DAMAGE’

The conversation Thursday night quickly shifted from issues facing each state to 2024, with DeSantis saying Newsom is “joined at the hip with Biden and (Vice President Kamala) Harris.”

Ron DeSantis, left, and Gavin Newsom

Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, left, and Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom sparred on various topics during the debate Thursday evening. (FOX News)

DeSantis also said Biden is “in decline” and represents “a danger to the country.” 

However, Newsom stressed his support for Biden and his re-election campaign.

“I’m proud of the work Biden and Harris have done,” Newsom said. “I will take Joe Biden at 100 rather than Ron DeSantis any day of the week at any age.”

TRUMP CAMPAIGN CALLS DESANTIS ‘THIRSTY ONLYFANS WANNABE’ FOR DEBATING NEWSOM: ‘KISS OF DEATH’

Newsom did take the opportunity, though, to take a swipe at DeSantis and his campaign.

Video

“How’s that going for you, Ron? You’re down 41 points in your own home state,” Newsom said. 

“Neither of us will be the nominee for our party in 2024,” Newsom told DeSantis at one point.

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The RealClearPolitics polling average has Trump leading Biden, 47% to 45.3%, in a general election matchup. 

As for the Republican primary, the RealClearPolitics polling average places Trump in first place at 62%. DeSantis is in second place with 13.6%. 

Brooke Singman is a Fox News Digital politics reporter. You can reach her at Brooke.Singman@Fox.com or @BrookeSingman on Twitter.

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