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Ron DeSantis to headline New Hampshire GOP fundraising dinner

DeSantis makes first Iowa visit ahead of 2024
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis one of many potential 2024 candidates to visit Iowa 05:58

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is going to headline the New Hampshire GOP's "Amos Tuck" fundraising dinner on April 14. 

This is the first announced trip to New Hampshire for DeSantis so far this year, as the infrastructure for a potential presidential run continues to build and his traveling schedule includes more early presidential primary states. 

The April 14 event will be held in Manchester, the state's biggest city. New Hampshire GOP chair Chris Ager said in a statement to CBS News that "we are looking forward to hearing the Governor's message."

The news was first reported by Fox News

DeSantis visited Iowa and Nevada, two other states that hold early nominating contests, over this past weekend for his "Freedom Blueprint" tour to promote his new book and talk about his record in Florida. 

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Attends Freedom Blueprint Event
Ron DeSantis, governor of Florida, during a Freedom Blueprint event in Des Moines, Iowa, US, on Friday, March 10, 2023.  Bloomberg

In Las Vegas over the weekend, DeSantis touted his state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, saying "the elites got everything wrong about COVID."

"We refused to let our state descend into Faucian dystopia," he said. He went on to say the "Fauci decrees" weren't about health or science but about politics. Brief chants of "lock him up" broke out in the crowd when DeSantis said Fauci needs to be held accountable. 

DeSantis also touched on other right-wing culture war issues such as the 2020 Portland protests, "law-and-order" at the southern border, voter ID, banning critical race theory in schools and gender-affirming care. 

Before and after the DeSantis rally in Las Vegas, voters told CBS News that while they love the Florida governor, they'd prefer if he waited until 2028. 

"I love Ron DeSantis and I want every governor in this country to be just like him," said Ilene Mann. "I love President Trump and I love DeSantis. What I would really love is for Trump to be president now, in 2024, and DeSantis in 2028." 

Jan Ripsco said the same thing. "I would prefer that he run next election and Trump wins." Ripsco said she is worried about keeping Florida "very conservative" and is undecided on who she would support in a Trump-DeSantis match up. Ripsco also called DeSantis a "gift from God" and said she wishes other states would follow his lead. 

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