Donald Trump trolled his rival Ron DeSantis over the end of a 60-day "countdown" coined by a DeSantis strategist.
Jeff Roe, the chief of DeSantis super PAC Never Back Down, set a 60-day deadline before the first Republican primary debate for DeSantis to overtake Trump.
Trump's team labeled it the "kiss of death countdown" and has been reminding DeSantis daily of the 60-day window.
DeSantis launched his campaign with high expectations that he has struggled to meet. A sobering poll showed DeSantis slipping to the single digits and tying for second place with Nikki Haley.
Meanwhile, Republican donors who considered DeSantis as a possible alternative to Trump earlier this year have begun to give Trump a second look, an NBC report found.
On Tuesday, the Trump campaign marked the end of the 60-day countdown with a tongue-in-cheek video compilation of DeSantis' awkward moments on the campaign trail. The Trump campaign warned that the "hits on DeSanctus will continue" until DeSantis gives up and ends his campaign.
"The 'end' will be an everlasting experience DeSanctus will have to endure until he gets it through his thick skull that he has no shot to be the nominee, let alone the president," they said in a statement.
Was all of this worth it, Ron?
Was it worth selling your soul to the devil Jeff Roe because you thought you could buy the presidency?
He has you on a leash and walks you like a dog.
Maybe you're into that type of stuff. pic.twitter.com/t3wz9ZMtPb
— Team Trump (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@TeamTrump) October 24, 2023
DeSantis distanced himself from Roe but admitted that the 60-day countdown wasn't one of Never Back Down's best ideas.
"He’s not my adviser, and they do what they want to do. I think that that’s fine. I don’t think very many people think that that was a very smart thing to do with whatever was going on with that,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis has begun to attack Trump more aggressively, painting Trump as old and Biden-like.
"He is wedded to the teleprompter. He can’t get off that teleprompter. Anytime he does, he says things like ‘don’t vote.’ He’s telling people not to vote. Like we have all the votes we need? Really?” DeSantis said.
But it may be too late for DeSantis to right the ship. Trump's team dismissed a "Trump accident tracker" as a "weak, b--- move by a dying campaign."