During a Tuesday campaign stop in New Hampshire, Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis said he wanted to “break the swamp.”
One attendee asked DeSantis why he was the right person to “drain the swamp,” invoking Trump’s 2016 catchphrase referencing establishment and other “deep state” figures in American government.
The Florida governor said he remembered Trump campaigning on the phrase, saying it was “exciting.”
“I also remember ‘lock her up,'” DeSantis said, criticizing the former president for not following through on his promise to investigate former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
“If I tell you I’m gonna do something, I’m not just saying that for an election,” he said. “There are promises I could make that may help me marginally politically, that I don’t know if I could necessarily follow through on, so I will not make that.”
“I think the idea of draining the swamp, in some respect, I think it misses it a little bit,” DeSantis continued, saying the swamp was “worse today than it’s ever been.”
WATCH: New Hampshire voter asks @RonDeSantis about Trump’s failure to Drain the Swamp.
“I remember these rallies in 2016. It was exciting … ‘DRAIN THE SWAMP!’ I also remember ‘Lock her up! Lock her up!’ then two weeks after the election [Trump said] ‘oh forget about it. Forget… pic.twitter.com/ciwpwVF3ZB
— DeSantis War Room 🐊 (@DeSantisWarRoom) June 27, 2023
“That’s a sad testament to the state of affairs in our country,” he said. “But even if you’re successful at draining it, the next guy can just refill it.”
“I wanna break the swamp … that’s what we need to do.”
The Florida governor also hit the former President on previous policies he ran on in 2016, including the construction of a wall on the country’s southern border.
“We’re actually going to build the wall,” he said. “A lot of politicians chirp. They make grandiose promises and then fail to deliver the actual results. The time for excuses is over. Now is the time to deliver results and finally get the job done.”
DeSantis said his border security policies would be the “most assertive … any administration has ever had.”
“We had a red wave in Florida,” DeSantis said. “That’s because we delivered results in Florida.”
Trump also campaigned in New Hampshire today, commenting on his Republican opponent saying, “You can’t drain the swamp if you’re part of the swamp.”
“Joe Biden and other opponents, many of them are owned,” the former President said during the New Hampshire GOP Women’s Luncheon. “Controlled, they’re bought, they’re paid for 100%.”
Trump claimed lobbyists and special interest groups were pouring “hundreds of millions of dollars” into “futile” attempts to stop his campaign.
“They even tried to have me arrested,” Trump said of his federal legal battle over classified documents. “Because they know that I’m the only candidate in this race who they will never own, and they will never control.”