Former President Donald Trump accused rival Florida Governor Ron DeSantis of favoring Chinese farmers over American farmers, a claim he has reaffirmed during campaign appearances nationwide.
At a campaign event in South Dakota, Trump said that Florida Republican DeSantis opposed tariffs against China that had been implemented earlier under his administration.
The former president said DeSantis strongly opposed his protection for the farmers.
"I protected our farmers, very simply, and by the way, those farmers got big checks," Trump said. Trump praised his tariffs, claiming that as a result, China paid American farmers $28 billion.
In 2018, the Trump administration imposed over $300 billion on Chinese goods.
At that time, when DeSantis ran for governor of Florida, he was backing Trump's pressure campaign against China but was concerned about retaliation against farmers.
"I'm not a fan of farm subsidies, and you know, to throw billions of dollars in farm subsidies, I want to get away from doing that," the Florida governor said.
He opposed agriculture subsidies that attempted to counteract retaliatory tariffs from the current trade spat between the United States and China.
DeSantis approved legislation earlier this year to discourage Chinese nationals from purchasing property in Florida.
He referred to the Chinese Communist Party as "the United States' greatest geopolitical threat" in a statement made at the time.
The former president also referred to DeSantis as "disloyal" for opposing the change.
"Very simply, DeSanctis sided with the communists in China, and he fought very hard that this not take place," Trump added.
Trump, despite the indictments and criminal charges against him maintains a top spot in the GOP nomination for president amongst all other candidates.
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