POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

DeSantis is unhurt in a car accident in Tennessee while traveling to presidential campaign events

Jul 25, 2023, 8:17 AM | Updated: 1:56 pm

ron desantis...

Republican presidential candidate Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during a campaign event on Monday, July 17, 2023, in Tega Cay, S.C. (AP Photo/Meg Kinnard)

(AP Photo/Meg Kinnard)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was involved in a multi-car accident on Tuesday in Tennessee but was uninjured as he traveled in a motorcade to a campaign stop for his 2024 presidential bid.

The chain reaction crash happened before 8:15 a.m. when traffic slowed on Interstate 75 in Chattanooga, causing four cars in the motorcade to hit one another, police said. All the vehicles involved in the crash were government vehicles taking DeSantis and his team to his scheduled event, police said.

The Republican White House hopeful was not hurt, according to Chattanooga police, Florida law enforcement protecting the governor and DeSantis campaign spokesperson Bryan Griffin. DeSantis continued on to the campaign event. A female staff member who suffered a minor injury in the crash was treated at the event, police said.

The governor’s staff and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s agents, who are required by Florida law to provide security for the governor and his immediate family, “all have been cleared with no significant injuries,” department spokeswoman Gretl Plessinger said. One of the department’s agents was driving the governor’s vehicle, she said.

Representatives for DeSantis’ campaign did not offer more details about the accident. A spokesperson for the Florida governor’s office deferred questions about the accident to the campaign.

DeSantis was scheduled to hold events throughout central and eastern Tennessee as he prioritizes Super Tuesday states in his campaigning. Super Tuesday, held on March 5 next year, is when the largest number of delegates are up for grabs of any day in the primary cycle.

Earlier this month, DeSantis addressed more than 1,800 attendees at a state GOP dinner in Nashville.

The Florida governor, who has trailed front-runner Donald Trump in the GOP presidential contest, was expected to be at a fundraiser at a private home in Chattanooga on Tuesday. Hosts for the fundraiser were to pay $10,000 per couple for the event, while co-hosts were paying $5,000 and other attendees were paying $2,000 each, according to the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

DeSantis was expected to attend additional fundraisers on Tuesday in Knoxville and Franklin.

The Republican candidate has been attending a string of fundraisers lately as his campaign has faced some surprising financial pressures. He was in Utah over the weekend holding fundraisers and in New York last week for an event in the Hamptons.

Just two months after entering the race, DeSantis already has been cutting staff while facing new questions about his aggressive spending, his media strategy and his apparent willingness to brawl with any and all foes except for Trump, the one person he must defeat to claim the GOP’s 2024 presidential nomination.

“The DeSantis campaign is recalibrating. It’s clear it needs to,” said Republican strategist Terry Sullivan, who managed Marco Rubio’s 2016 presidential campaign. “But at the end of the day, they’re still better positioned than any other challenger to Donald Trump, times 10.”

DeSantis’ team has quietly expressed confidence for months that voters would eventually tire of Trump’s escalating legal troubles and personal baggage. But that baggage, playing out in the U.S. legal system just as the GOP primary intensifies, is leaving precious little oxygen for his rivals to break through. And Trump’s standing with Republican primary voters seems to be growing stronger with every new legal challenge.

Still, DeSantis’ team has raised a stunning $150 million for his presidential ambitions so far. The vast majority, $130 million, has gone to a super PAC run by allies who cannot legally coordinate with the campaign.

The DeSantis campaign itself raised more than $20 million in the first six weeks he was in the race, though recently released federal filings revealed that he and his team had burned through more than $8 million in a spending spree that included more than 100 paid staffers, a large security detail and luxury travel.

___

This story has been corrected to show DeSantis was in Nashville earlier this month, not last week.

___

Price reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Meg Kinnard in Houston, Brendan Farrington in Tallahassee, Fla., and Adriana Gomez Licon in Miami contributed to this report.

___

Follow the AP’s coverage of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at https://apnews.com/hub/ron-desantis.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Politics + Government

mitt romney at johns hopkins commencement ceremony...

Sam Herrera

Mitt Romney’s commencement speech at Johns Hopkins University interrupted by protesters

Sen. Mitt Romney was briefly interrupted by protestors as he spoke at Johns Hopkins University's commencement ceremony on Thursday,

2 days ago

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall speaks at the City-County Building in Salt Lake City, May 5, 2...

Aimee Cobabe

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall is asking for a pay raise

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall is looking to increase her pay for up to 26% which will make an additional $44,000 a year. She is also proposing a 5% pay increase for all city employees for this year.

3 days ago

Senator Mitt Romney addresses ongoing drought conditions in Utah during a Budget Committee hearing ...

Alexandrea Bonilla

Senator Mitt Romney says we should be doing more to combat drought

Senator Mitt Romney is taking a look at how money is being spent on drought-related issues and pushing for more collaboration on the subject.

3 days ago

nikki haley shown, she endorsed trump...

Sam Herrera

Nikki Haley endorses Trump for president

The endorsement comes months after Haley ended her own presidential bid in March.

3 days ago

the us house of representatives shown at the capitol, the house passed a bill about sodium nitrite...

Allessandra Harris Gurr

House passes bill to ban a compound used in suicides

Legislation backed by Rep. Celeste Maloy would ban the consumer sale of sodium nitrite, a product becoming increasingly common in suicides.

3 days ago

Former U.S. President Donald Trump returns to the courtroom after a break on the first day of his t...

Sam Herrera

Defense rests case in Trump hush money trial

The defense in the hush money trial rested its case just a day after the prosecution rested.

5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

DeSantis is unhurt in a car accident in Tennessee while traveling to presidential campaign events