Billionaire Elon Musk said Friday he would support Ron DeSantis in 2024 if the Florida governor, who recently reached a second term, ran for president.
Earlier this month, DeSantis defeated Democratic opponent Charlie Crist by nearly 20 percentage points to be re-elected as Florida governor and cemented himself as the top rising star of the Republican Party.
Political pundits have been giving high marks to DeSantis, who is seen as a potential challenger to former President Donald Trump in the field of 2024 Republican presidential candidates. Trump announced 10 days ago that he would run again in the 2024 election.
“My preference for the 2024 presidency is someone who is sensible and centrist. I was hoping that would be the case with the Biden administration, but I’ve been disappointed so far,” Musk said on Twitter.
“Yes,” he responded in a tweet when asked if he would support DeSantis in 2024.
“As a reminder, I was a major supporter of the Obama-Biden presidency and (reluctantly) voted for Biden over Trump,” the Twitter owner said.
Musk had previously said in June that he was leaning toward supporting DeSantis for president in 2024, adding that the Florida governor would easily defeat Biden in the election.
When asked at the time about Musk’s support, DeSantis quipped, “I appreciate the support of African-Americans, what can I say?”
Musk, who is white, grew up in South Africa.
DeSantis is especially popular among conservatives for taking the lead on culture war issues related to race and gender. His governorship has been marked by his rejection of pandemic-related health restrictions, passage of a law limiting discussion of LGBTQ issues in schools and a dispute with Walt Disney over the law.
Musk urged Americans to choose a Republican Congress in the midterm elections earlier this month to counter Biden’s Democrats.
However, Democrats defied Republican hopes of a “red wave” in the midterms and retained control of the Senate, while Republicans won only a narrow majority in the House of Representatives.