MANCHESTER, N.H. – Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida’s address to the New Hampshire GOP’s annual fundraising dinner on Friday was momentarily interrupted a couple of minutes into his speech by a handful of female protesters.
The demonstrators, who appeared to chant ‘Jews Against DeSantis’ made their way all the way to the podium at the sold-out event at a hotel ballroom in downtown Manchester, New Hampshire’s largest city, before they were quickly removed by security.
DeSantis, remaking on the incident, told the audience to cheers and applause that ‘you’ve got to have a little spice in the speech. Right,’ before quickly returning to his prepared remarks.
All guests attending the event, which is the state party’s top annual fundraiser, had to pass through a security sweep before entering the ballroom.
New Hampshire state party chairman Chris Ager told Fox News earlier on Friday that the fundraising dinner would bring in over $250,000, which Ager said is a ‘record.’ And he noted that over 500 people would be in the audience, adding that ‘we had to close ticket sales earlier this week at 520 people.’
The trip is DeSantis’ first this cycle to New Hampshire, the state that holds the first primary and second contest overall in the GOP presidential nominating calendar. The popular conservative governor from Florida has already stopped this year in Iowa (which holds caucuses kicking off the Republican schedule) and Nevada (which holds the fourth contest) and next week visits South Carolina (which votes third).
While DeSantis remains on the 2024 sidelines, he’s expected to launch a presidential campaign sometime after the end of Florida’s legislative session, which concludes next month. But behind the scenes, he’s already made plenty of moves toward launching a campaign, including beefing up staff in Tallahassee.
The New Hampshire fundraising dinner is named after Amos Tuck, who is considered by many to have founded the Republican Party in the 1850s in Exeter, New Hampshire. Exeter, along with Ripon, Wisconsin, and Jackson, Michigan, claim to be the birthplace of the GOP.