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Trump slams Fox News’ Laura Ingraham over ‘hit piece’ saying DeSantis would do better against Biden than him

Donald Trump has lashed out at his longtime booster and Fox News host Laura Ingraham after she reported on polls suggesting the former president's Republican rival would be a better match to take back the White House in 2024.

Ingraham spent a portion of her Monday show discussing moves that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — Mr Trump's most likely primary rival — is making ahead of his expected announcement.

One of those moves includes an upcoming speech at the National Religious Broadcasting convention in Orlando, where Mr DeSantis will likely try to earn favour with evangelical Christians ahead of announcing his candidacy.

The Fox News anchor and her guest, Common Sense Society executive editor Chris Bedford, also discussed recent polls comparing Mr Trump's and Mr DeSantis's chances against Joe Biden in 2024.

Ultimately, the polls they featured concluded that Mr DeSantis would likely carry Arizona and Georgia — delivering a hypothetical victory over Joe Biden in 2024 — while Mr Trump would fail to carry the states much as he did in 2020.

The former president reacted as one might expect.

"Laura Ingraham on FoxNews just did a hit piece on me (there go her ratings!) showing some polls which indicate that Ron DeSanctimonious may do better against Biden than I would, when actually polls show that I do MUCH better against Biden than 'Rob,'" Mr Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social. He shared images of Fox News polls suggesting he is more favoured in the Rust Belt than Mr Biden.

Mr Trump then went on to denigrate Fox News and plug their competition.

"The poll your looking at now, which has me doing far better against Crooked Joe, was just put out by FOX, I am sure unhappily. I’m also leading DeSanctus by over 40 points in Primary Voting,” he said, adding a final plug for Newsmax. “Watch Greg Kelly on Newsmax at 10:00 P.M."

Ingraham did mention on her show that Mr Trump was the "overwhelming" favourite to earn the party's primary candidacy, noting that he has a "stunning" lead over Mr DeSantis — who has not yet announced his run — in polling.

Polling data site FiveThirtyEight's national average tracker suggests that Mr Trump has an exceptional lead over Mr DeSantis in a theoretical primary race. Mr Trump has 53.5 per cent of support while Mr DeSantis only scored 20.8 per cent.

Mr DeSantis wasn't the only potential rival to take a lashing from Mr Trump; the former president also hit out at former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.

He shared a Newsmax clip capturing a 2021 press conference in which Ms Haley said she would not run in 2024 if Mr Trump was also running.

"This is a classic!" Mr Trump wrote alongside the video. "'I would not run if President Trump ran.'"