Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks at the Celebrate the Faces of Israel conference, Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem, April 27, 2023.
Maya Alleruzzo | AFP | Getty Images
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis presidential campaign The announcement plans were derailed Wednesday night by massive technical glitches on Twitter that temporarily prevented him from announcing his candidacy.
“The servers are a bit strained,” Elon Musk, the owner of Twitter, said in the app’s live audio stream, where he and DeSantis were scheduled to have a conversation that included the governor’s first verbal announcement of his White House bid.
Musk’s comment came amid crashes, feedback errors and audio failures that prevented the Spaces Twitter conversation from starting about 25 minutes after its scheduled 6:00 p.m. ET start.
Musk and investor David Sacks, an ally of both men, launched a new Twitter Spaces webcast after the original one failed. But technical problems cropped up in that stream as well, including in the middle of DeSantis’ remarks.
DeSantis filed federal papers earlier in the day, officially putting him in the running for the Republican presidential nomination. His campaign also released a video in which DeSantis says, “I’m running for president to lead our great American comeback.”
But it was DeSantis’ unorthodox decision to make a major announcement on Twitter’s audio-only tool that drew the most attention.
The canceled first Spaces event had over half a million listeners before it was completely abandoned.
When he was finally able to speak without interruption, DeSantis began by repeating some of the remarks he had made in a pre-recorded video his campaign had released shortly before.
“Well, I’m running for President of the United States to lead our great American comeback,” DeSantis said on Twitter. He touched on issues including crime and economic anxiety and challenged the president Joe Biden for lacking “vigor” and taking “hints from the awakened crowd.”
The botched event came as Musk pushes to boost Twitter’s revenue. Earlier this month, he hired former NBCUniversal advertising chief Linda Yaccarino to replace him as CEO of the social media platform.
A DeSantis campaign official tried to put a positive spin on the sizzling event, telling NBC News, “Governor DeSantis broke the internet — that should tell you all you need to know about the strength of his candidacy….!”
But DeSantis’ critics and his leading political opponents pounced on the glitch fest.
“His collar is too big!” Trump wrote on Truth Social, his own Twitter-like social platform.
Meanwhile, Biden’s official Twitter account took the opportunity to solicit contributions to his re-election campaign.
“This link is working,” Biden tweeted with a URL linking to his ActBlue donation page.