Date Set for Gavin Newsom-Ron DeSantis Debate

California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (edited from Getty Images)
September 25, 2023

California governor Gavin Newsom (D.) and Florida governor Ron DeSantis (R.) finalized details for a debate that will take place in November, further fueling speculation that Newsom is building up his credentials for a presidential run.

The debate, which comes as DeSantis is trailing far behind frontrunner and former president Donald Trump in the Republican presidential primary, will air on Nov. 30 in Georgia and will be moderated by Fox News host Sean Hannity.

Hannity said in a statement that he's "looking forward to providing viewers with an informative debate about the everyday issues and governing philosophies that impact the lives of every American."

Plans for the debate had been received negatively by allies of Vice President Kamala Harris, who reportedly interpreted it as an attempt by Newsom to crowd out Harris and position himself as the successor to President Joe Biden as the flag-bearer of the Democratic Party.

Insiders close to the vice president told NBC News last month that they're worried that the debate will detract from the Biden reelection campaign and Harris's future political career.

"It's disrespectful," an adviser to Harris said. "Joe Biden is running with Kamala Harris. That's the Democratic ticket."