Trump denied knowing who Nick Fuentes was
On November 26 it was reported that Donald Trump had hosted the rapper Ye (formerly known as Kanye West) and renowned right-wing broadcaster and white supremacist Nick Fuentes for dinner at his Mar-A-Lago home in Florida.
While Trump has denied being aware of who Nick Fuentes was, it's clear from accounts of those formerly close to the one-term president that he was likely fully aware of Fuentes' background. Commentators have subsequently suggested that this is yet another reason why Republicans in Florida and around the United States need Governor Ron DeSantis to run for President in 2024.
According to reports by NBC, the mood at dinner just before Thanksgiving, turned sour after Ye told Trump he was planning to run for President in 2024. He invited Trump to be his running mate which resulted in the former president turning nasty on his guests.
He has subsequently denied knowing Fuentes, via his Truth Social account.
Fuentes endorses DeSantis?
Various sources have since shared their accounts of the night, including Fuentes himself who sought to clarify that Trump does in fact know him. In a live-streamed video, Fuentes also offered a somewhat-disturbing endorsement for DeSantis, claiming that his values now seem to align most closely with Fuentes' America First movement.
For Fuentes to offer his rubber-stamp of DeSantis may not be something that the Florida governor is all that keen to embrace. But it is yet another endorsement picked up in the weeks since the gubernatorial election, suggesting that his popularity within the Republican party and the conservative media is growing.
If he should go on to announce a run for the White House in 2024, all indicators so far are positive that he would win the nomination ahead of Trump.
Trump's popularity is falling
Ever since the announcement of Trump's candidacy - which was widely mocked in the media - it is becoming increasingly clear that his status amongst those who previously supported him is on the decline.
Former allies to Trump - including Colorado Republican Lauren Boebert - have declared their admiration for Ron DeSantis, while major Republican mega-donors have suggested they will be withdrawing support for Trump in favor of DeSantis. Only the most hardened of supporters like Georgia Republican Marjorie Taylor-Greene seem to remain loyal to Trump.
Even their allegiance may be tested if he continues to associate with controversial figures like Ye, and Nick Fuentes.
The more that Trump is seen to associate with the more controversial figures within the Republican party and its affiliates, the more it seems likely that the former one-term president will see his popularity and chances of reelection floundering. Time will tell if Ron DeSantis goes on to pick up the support that Trump loses.
Do you think that Trump should be more cautious about the figures that he associates with, rather than having to deny he knows people he let into his home? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.