Trump Under Increased Pressure to Debate from GOP Rivals

( – With less than a month until the first GOP primary debate, former President Trump has yet to decide on whether he will attend. On several occasions he has explained why he believes that he should not participate, most recently during a Fox News interview with Maria Bartiromo. She questioned him on the possibility of losing ground to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in the polls if he decided not to participate, but the former President told her that DeSantis could lose support to other candidates, which he believes is already happening. Bartiromo’s interview took place the day after Trump’s speech at Turning Point Action, where another presidential hopeful, Vivek Ramaswamy, captured the attention of many.

The former President’s prediction has already come to fruition, as Ramaswamy has surged to 10 percent in the latest Harvard-Harris survey, up from the 3 percent he garnered in its June poll. In the Bartiromo interview, Trump spoke highly of Ramaswamy, telling Maria, “I think Vivek has done a very good job, frankly.” Trump supporters have also taken notice of Ramaswamy’s gains on DeSantis, with many chiding DeSantis’ campaign for what they believe to be a disastrous performance. With the first debate looming, the media has begun asking candidates what they think about the 45th President’s stance on the matter.

Ramaswamy has stated that he would not be going after other candidates in his campaign, instead focusing on what he aims to achieve as president. He did, however, comment on the possibility of the former President declining to participate in the debates, saying “I’m not going to let him get away with that.”

When asked about Trump attending the debates, DeSantis told a Newsmax host that every candidate needs to earn their votes. Former New Jersey Governor and presidential candidate Chris Christie has taken a more abrasive approach to the subject, choosing to hit the former president with insults for potentially skipping out on the debates. Former President Trump maintains a commanding lead, polling at 52 percent in the June 22 Harvard/Harris poll, with DeSantis trailing him at just 12 percent.

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