Ron DeSantis looked 'like he's having a colonoscopy live on stage' at the 3rd debate, 2012 GOP candidate says

  • Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. had an unflattering view of Ron DeSantis's 3rd debate performance.

  • The former 2012 GOP candidate said DeSantis "looks like he's having a colonoscopy live on stage."

  • He also said DeSantis is "dropping like a rock" and it's a "foregone conclusion" Trump wins the nod.

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. watched the third 2024 GOP presidential debate, and his assessments of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis were not flattering.

"Why does DeSantis looks [sic] like he's having a colonoscopy live on stage?" Huntsman, the former US ambassador to Russia, wondered aloud at one point. "It does not inspire confidence."

Huntsman, a more moderate Republican who's involved with the centrist group No Labels, invited journalists from the Deseret News to hear his reactions to the debate on Wednesday evening.

He said that it was a "foregone conclusion" that former President Donald Trump would win the GOP nomination, arguing that the purpose of the debate was about "who can position him or herself to be Trump's running mate."

He also said DeSantis is "dropping like a rock" in the polls and that he came off as "totally patronizing" in his response to the question of why he should be the GOP nominee over Trump.

A former 2012 presidential candidate himself, Huntsman seemed to take a dim view of the debates more generally.

"The hard part is differentiating rhetoric, throwaway lines, from useful ideas that are actually implementable," he said. "90% of this is noise."

Huntsman, while stressing that he's "neutral," also offered high praise for former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, saying she's increasingly "showing some moxie as a leader."

Spokespeople for DeSantis did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

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