WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Just days after former President Donald Trump won the Republican primary in New Hampshire, some Florida Republicans were hoping to still be talking about the presidential campaign of Gov. Ron DeSantis.
That hope ended when Desantis suspended his presidential campaign just two days earlier.
That was the backdrop for Sunday's "To the Point with Michael Williams."
Joined by Joe Budd, Republican State Committeeman for Palm Beach County, the conversation began with a look back at the DeSantis campaign. Budd, an early supporter of DeSantis for president, said it was the governor's policies and "America First" attitude that drew his support.
When asked where the DeSantis campaign fell short, Budd turned to former President Donald Trump and the commanding attention he is receiving from Republican voters.
"I think they just feel like, 'Hey, we're gonna back President Trump because you guys cheated him to begin with, and we're going to overcome this,'" Budd said speaking about some Trump supporters.
Budd also discussed his thoughts on the former president's legal battles.
"The events turned out to be poor judgment by a lot of people and acts of criminal acts, but I don't believe the president wanted that done," Budd said about the storming of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
The discussion wrapped up with talks about the strengths and weaknesses of both Trump and President Joe Biden.
Budd suggested GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley would make a good vice presidential pick for Trump. He called abortion the one issue that Democrats have an advantage on going into the 2024 election.
In Sunday's roundtable, WPTV political analyst Brian Crowley joined the program to talk about the environment and the DeSantis campaign. The discussion kicked off with a look at the governor's first public event since dropping out of the presidential race.
DeSantis was in Palm Beach County to watch water from Lake Okeechobee flow south into the first of three 6,500-acre stormwater treatment areas. It's all part of a larger plan to build a reservoir south of the lake and eventually send treated water south into the Everglades.
From there, the discussion turned to presidential politics and questions of what comes next for DeSantis. Crowley suggests the governor will continue leaning into culture war issues but also look to work more closely with the press.
In the "Crowley Closer", a jovial reminder to watch and enjoy the NFL championship weekend, as the two joked about their differing opinions about football.