Former President Donald Trump received a major boost for his 2024 presidential bid on Sunday, when Rep. Bob Good, R-Bedford County, the chairman of the influential House Freedom Caucus, announced his full support for Trump’s campaign. Good’s endorsement came shortly after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who was seen as Trump’s main rival for the GOP nomination, dropped out of the race.
Good praises Trump as the greatest president of his lifetime
In a post on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, Good expressed his admiration for Trump and his policies, and urged other Republicans to join him in backing the former president.
“It is my privilege to provide my complete and total endorsement for Donald J. Trump as the 47th President of the United States. President Trump was the greatest President of my lifetime, and we need him to reinstate the policies that were working so well for America,” Good wrote.
Good also said he was committed to doing everything he could to help ensure Trump’s reelection, and called on all Republicans, independents, and Democrats who love America and are concerned about her current direction, to support Trump.
Good faces primary challenge from McGuire over DeSantis endorsement
Good’s endorsement of Trump may also be seen as a strategic move to fend off a primary challenge from state Sen. John McGuire, R-Goochland County, who has accused Good of being a “never-Trumper” and a “RINO” (Republican In Name Only) for endorsing DeSantis back in May.
McGuire, a former state delegate who announced his congressional bid just days after being elected to represent Virginia’s 10th Senate District, has repeatedly attacked Good as a traitor to Trump and his supporters, and claimed to have the former president’s backing.
Last week, Trump campaign manager Chris LaCivita told Cardinal News that Good had lost Trump’s support over his defection to DeSantis, and vowed to make Good unelectable.
“Bob Good won’t be electable when we get done with him,” LaCivita said.
Many Republicans in the 5th District have expressed their frustration with McGuire, who at a GOP convention last May had pledged to not challenge Good and to focus instead on his four-year term in the state Senate.
Trump consolidates GOP base after DeSantis withdrawal
DeSantis’s withdrawal from the presidential race sets up an essentially two-person race for the GOP nomination between former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley and Trump, who remains the overwhelming favorite among Republican voters.
DeSantis had been seen as the strongest contender to challenge Trump, as he had built a national profile as a staunch ally of the former president and a vocal critic of the Biden administration’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, immigration, and other issues.
However, DeSantis faced mounting pressure from Trump and his allies to drop out of the race, as they accused him of dividing the party and undermining Trump’s chances of reclaiming the White House.
On Sunday, DeSantis announced he was suspending his campaign, citing the need to focus on his duties as governor and the best interests of the Republican Party.
“I have decided to end my campaign for president and to support the candidacy of Donald J. Trump, who has proven himself to be a leader who can restore America’s greatness and defend our freedom,” DeSantis said in a statement.
Trump welcomed DeSantis’s endorsement and praised him as a “great governor and a great friend.”
“I want to thank Ron DeSantis for his endorsement and his service to our country. He is a great governor and a great friend. He has done a fantastic job in Florida and he will continue to do so. He has a bright future in the Republican Party and I look forward to working with him to make America great again,” Trump said.