Ron DeSantis’ family managed to escape injury after a 100-year-old oak tree broke in half and landed on the governor’s mansion in Tallahassee while they were inside the structure, according to a social media post from his wife, Casey DeSantis.
She took to her X account and posted a photo of the tree, which appeared to have been split in half.
“100 year old oak tree falls on the Governor’s Mansion in Tallahassee — Mason, Madison, Mamie and I were home at the time, but thankfully no one was injured. Our prayers are with everyone impacted by the storm,” she wrote.
Florida’s first lady was making a reference to Hurricane Idalia, which made landfall on Wednesday as a Category 3 storm, local reports noted.
The governor, meanwhile, paused his presidential campaign to return to his state so he could help manage the response efforts following the storm.
The governor told reporters that “you do what you need to do” in situations like this and cited his prior work in dealing with Hurricane Ian, which struck Florida last September while he was running for governor of the state. He did not specify how long he would pause his presidential campaign.
During a press conference Tuesday in Tallahassee, a reporter asked DeSantis how long he’s “planning on staying in Florida and off of the campaign trail” ahead of the hurricane’s landfall on Wednesday.
DeSantis responded, “Well, this is no different. You remember Ian, we were in the midst of a governor campaign.”
“I had all kinds of stuff scheduled, not just in Florida, around the country. You know, we were doing different things and, you know, you do what you need to do. I mean, and so that’s what we’re doing,” he continued. “It’s going to be no different than what we did during Hurricane Ian.”
“I’m hoping this storm is not as catastrophic as Hurricane Ian was, but we’re going to do what we need to do because it’s just something that’s important. But it’s no different than what we’ve done in past iterations of all this stuff,” he added.
DeSantis mentioned the “political season” earlier in the week when discussing the storm’s potential “life-threatening” nature and its effects on Florida.
“There’s time and a place to have a political season, but then there’s a time and a place to say that this is something that’s life-threatening,” the governor said Monday. “This is something that could potentially cost somebody their life, that could cost them their livelihood. And we have a responsibility as Americans to come together and do what we can to mitigate any damage and to protect people.”
“So that’s what I’ve done on all these different issues, and that’s what I’ll continue to do; when you have these situations, you got to step up,” DeSantis added.
A brand new Yahoo News/YouGov poll, released just hours before the first GOP presidential debate, shows support for DeSantis’ campaign dropped from 23 percent in July to 12 percent. This is the first time in the poll’s monitoring of the 2024 GOP race that a higher proportion of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters expressed uncertainty about their support for a candidate, at 14 percent, than expressed support for DeSantis.
Vivek Ramaswamy increased from 3 percent in the previous month to 8 percent but still lagged behind DeSantis by 4 points in the poll. South Carolina GOP Sen. Tim Scott, who came in second with 4 percent, was followed by former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, who came in third with 3 percent.
Former President Trump held a commanding lead with 52 percent. Trump’s advantage over DeSantis, who remained his main rival, increased from 25 points in July to 40 points. The results come as DeSantis has sought to reset his campaign in recent weeks after struggling to make gains in the polls and taking on high expenses,” The Hill reported.