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Donald Trump denies coming up with ‘Meatball Ron’ nickname for DeSantis

Donald Trump denies ownership of the latest technologysavory Nickname for the man who becomes his greatest rival in the Republican Party.

After The New York Times reported that Mr Trump has taken to calling Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis “Meatball Ron,” the ex-president released a statement on his Truth Social platform denying the story.

The former president, who appears not to have publicly mentioned the derogatory name to Mr. DeSantis, is said to have attacked him behind closed doors in an “apparent dig” at the governor’s appearance.

Mr. Trump denies this and appears unwilling to portray himself as concerned about the man who is likely to be his biggest rival in the 2024 primary if the governor decides to run.

“All the fake news is reporting that I spend a lot of my time coming up with a good ‘nickname’ for Ron DeSanctimonious that will obviously give the presidential ‘thing’ a shot. You are all 100% wrong, I don’t even think about it – a very unimportant subject to me!!!” wrote the former President

Mr Trump’s strategy for attacking his political rivals has long resorted to childish and abusive language.

Since November’s midterm elections – which saw many of Mr Trump’s supported candidates fare poorly while Mr DeSantis emerged as the GOP favorite for the 2024 White House race – the Florida governor has borne the brunt of his outbursts.

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Most recently, Mr. Trump attempted to brand him as “Ron DeSanctimonious” — a nickname that may not have caught on quite as Mr. Trump would have liked.

Last week, the former president went further, reinforcing a suggestion that Mr. DeSantis “groomed” teenage girls and drank with his students when he was a high school teacher.

Mr. DeSantis, who has largely avoided addressing the former president’s criticism, responded that he was too busy “delivering results” and “fighting Joe Biden” to engage with his former ally.

In a series of Truth Social posts, Mr Trump promoted a photo posted by another showing a man resembling Mr DeSantis standing with a group of young women, one of whom appears to be holding a beer bottle.

“This is Ron DeSanctimonious, a teacher grooming high school girls with alcohol,” reads a caption to the user’s post, using Mr. Trump’s derogatory nickname for the Florida governor.

Mr Trump has re-shared the picture several times.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis with then-US President Donald Trump in the Oval Office of the White House in happier times in April 2020

(Getty Images)

“I spend my time delivering results for the people of Florida and fighting Joe Biden. That’s how I spend my time,” Mr. DeSantis said at a news conference on Wednesday.

“I don’t spend my time slandering other Republicans.”

The Florida leader added he’s faced “defamatory things” every day I’ve been governor but has “thick skin.”

While Mr. Trump has confirmed his intention to run for president for a third term, Mr. DeSantis has yet to announce his offer.

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