Donald Trump Jr. campaigns for Congressman Ron DeSantis
From DeSantis Campaign

If there’s one thing the Trump family values most, it’s loyalty. The President’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., praised Congressman Ron DeSantis during a campaign stop Wednesday in Orlando for being an early supporter of his father.

“Ron DeSantis was there from day one. He got it,” said Trump Jr. “He was with us when it wasn’t really cool to be with us. He was with us in the zero percent days.”

While Trump Jr. credits DeSantis for his unwavering support of President Trump, it’s clear that the Jacksonville-area Congressman has been a huge beneficiary of the elder Trump’s support. Down double digits in the polls just a few weeks ago, DeSantis’ campaign took off after President Trump endorsed him to be Florida’s next governor. Three public polls released this week make it clear that DeSantis has taken the frontrunner title away from Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam – two of those polls have DeSantis with a double-digit lead.

Speaking before Trump Jr., DeSantis took aim at Putnam calling him a “transactional Republican and the crown prince of crony capitalism. He’s the toast of Tallahassee.”

Adam Putnam at The Villages
From Putnam Campaign
Putnam Campaigns in The Villages

The high energy rally held at B.B. King’s Blues Club in the heart of Orlando’s tourist district was a stark contrast to Putnam’s day. Just an hour away at a candidate’s forum in The Villages, the Republican-heavy retirement community, Putnam touted his “Florida First Agenda”

“Our plan is putting Florida Families First, supporting and defending life and taking on the opioid crisis,” Putnam said “Our plan is to implement a Secure Florida First Agenda, with the support and input of the 45 Florida Sheriffs endorsing me, that addresses both public safety and national security.”

Putnam has been critical of DeSantis’ heavy on Washington, light on Florida focus. He used the forum to remind Republicans that he supports the President, though DeSantis calls him a recent convert to the Trump agenda.

“I’m proud of President Trump for rattling the cage and trying to bring fairness back to our trading system. I love the fact that he is fighting for American factory workers and Florida farmers,” Putnam said.

Putnam will receive a high profile endorsement of his own Thursday in Orlando, where he’ll appear at a campaign event with Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, one of the most popular Republicans in the state and herself a long-time supporter of President Trump.


David Bishop is a native Floridian, husband and father. During his 30 year career, David has been a journalist, political operative and communications consultant.