With the Iowa caucuses just a few days away, former President Donald Trump is distancing himself from biotech executive Vivek Ramaswamy, telling his MAGA supporters that he is not one of them.
In a post to Truth Social on Saturday, Trump called the GOP political opponent “very sly,” making it clear that he is not a fan of Ramaswamy’s show of support and compliments.
“Vivek started his campaign as a great supporter, ‘the best President in generations,’ etc. Unfortunately, now all he does is disguise his support in the form of deceitful campaign tricks. Very sly,” Trump wrote.
He then warned his supporters not to get “duped” into voting for Vivek, adding that the anti-woke entrepreneur is “not MAGA.”
“A vote for Vivek is a vote for the ‘other side’ — don’t get duped by this. Vote for “TRUMP. Don’t waste your vote! Vivek is not MAGA,” Trump’s post read.
Trump’s post, which went on to take a swipe at President Joe Biden for his “Indictments against his Political Opponent,” follows countless shows of public support for him from Ramaswamy, who is the only candidate that has never publicly attacked the former president amid their separate campaigns.
Just two days before the post, Ramaswamy filed an amicus brief at the U.S. Supreme Court in a bid to aid Trump’s fight against efforts to keep him off state primary ballots.
“President Trump’s political opponents have sought to disqualify him from the ballot in multiple states because they fear they cannot beat him in a free and fair election. Needless to say, the distress of competing against a formidable opponent cannot justify disqualification under Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment. The consequences of affirming the Colorado Supreme Court’s decision will extend far beyond the dispute over President Trump’s eligibility,” the businessman had said in the filing on Thursday.
Even after Trump’s personal attack, Ramaswamy has held back from a counterattack, as he said in a post on X later that Saturday that he does not think that friendly fire is helpful.
He wrote, “Donald Trump was the greatest President of the 21st century, and I’m not going to criticize him in response to this late attack.”
He, however, said that he is “worried” for the GOP front runner and the country as a whole, as he pointed out that he has stood in his defense at every turn.
“I showed up at the Miami courthouse in solidarity following his first federal indictment. I filed a FOIA demand to the Biden DOJ. I submitted an amicus brief this week with the U.S. Supreme Court calling on them to overturn Colorado’s ruling,” he added.
He further pointed at his public promise to remove himself from Colorado and Maine’s primary ballots if Trump was not allowed to be in them, a move other candidates did not commit to even though they also spoke out against efforts to remove Trump from the states’ ballots.
In his X post, Ramaswamy went on to call for the nation to “open our eyes.”
“Last time it was a man-made pandemic & Big Tech election interference. Now, the same billionaires funding the lawsuits against Trump are the ones trying to prop up Nikki Haley. The same MSM blasting Trump is lavishing praise on Nikki. They want to narrow this to a two-horse race between Trump & Haley, eliminate Trump (one way or other), & trot their puppet into the White House,” he wrote.
Yes, I saw President Trump’s Truth Social post. It’s an unfortunate move by his campaign advisors, I don’t think friendly fire is helpful. Donald Trump was the greatest President of the 21st century, and I’m not going to criticize him in response to this late attack.
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) January 14, 2024
Before now, Trump has maintained a friendly position with Ramaswamy. The exact reason for the turnaround is not completely clear. However, there are speculations that it stemmed from a strategy by Ramaswamy’s campaign that involved shirts with the inscription, “Save Trump, vote Vivek.”
Adding substance to the speculation is senior Trump campaign adviser Chris LaCivita who quote tweeted a picture of Ramaswamy posing with supporters wearing the shirts, saying, “Here is a great picture of this campaigns number one FRAUD – 1. Trump doesnt need “saving” 2. If you support @realDonaldTrump you sure as hell dont vote for this FAKE.”
Here is a great picture of this campaigns number one FRAUD –
— Chris LaCivita (@LaCivitaC) January 13, 2024