Casey DeSantis broke down in tears Thursday as she talked about her battle with breast cancer and admitted that her three children still don’t know she had the disease.
‘About a year and a half ago, I didn’t know if I would see my kids graduate from kindergarten,’ Florida’s first lady told Fox News, referring to her October 2021 diagnosis.
With her husband, Ron DeSantis, by her side, Cassie choked up as she described telling her children — Madison, Mason and Mamie — that she hurt her arm because she didn’t want them to know she had cancer.
The interview, which aired on the popular morning show ‘Fox & Friends’, was a joint effort between Casey and Ron DeSantis but it was the first woman who did most of the talking.
She described how her husband supported her through her treatment, spoke of his love for his country, and argued that he was the best person to be the next President of the United States.
She also defended herself against criticism of ‘Walmart Melania’ and ‘America’s Karen’.
Casey DeSantis broke down in tears as she talked about her struggle with breast cancer; Ron DeSantis was by her side during the interview
But it was talking about her battle with breast cancer that brought tears to the first lady’s eyes.
‘The hard part, for me, was that I had four, three and one-year-olds at home and it’s very hard when you look at your kids and they don’t know.’
Her husband patted her leg as she struggled to talk about her five months of treatment, which included multiple rounds of chemo, radiation and surgery.
‘To this day, they still don’t know, they don’t know what mum did. In fact, I went through six rounds of chemotherapy, six weeks of radiation and three surgeries. I could not use my left hand. I told them I hurt my arm, because I didn’t want to tell them,’ she admitted.
She wiped away tears as she described how Ron had been by her side the whole time.
‘By the grace of God, I am here and this man has helped me more than he will ever know,’ she said.
Florida’s governor said the couple appreciated the support he received during his treatment.
‘We got a lot of support when we made it public. People were praying for him,’ he told Fox News.
After five months of chemotherapy and surgery, Ron announced in January 2022 that Casey was cancer free.
Casey DeSantis wipes away tears after talking about her breast cancer treatment
Ron DeSantis and Casey DeSantis with children Madison, Mason and Mamie on Election Night 2022, when Ron won a second term as Governor of Florida
The couple got married in 2010. Their youngest child, Mamie, is the first child born in the Florida governor’s mansion in more than 50 years.
A year after her initial cancer diagnosis, Casey took to the television cameras to talk about her illness.
Sitting on a couch in the governor’s mansion wearing a purple sweater and jeans, she looked into the camera and described how Ron helped her through her treatment.
‘I was facing the fight of my life. He was the father who took care of my children when I couldn’t. He was there to pick me up off the ground when I literally couldn’t stand. He was there to fight for me when I didn’t have the strength to fight for myself,’ he said.
That campaign ad, which blasted across the state of Florida and caught fire on social media, is credited with helping DeSantis win a second term at the Florida governor’s mansion.
In an interview that aired Thursday, she told Fox News that she made the ad because she was tired of seeing attacks on her husband’s character.
‘You just have to say it from the heart, I felt the need to do it, I was tired of the hits he was taking, these false accusations about his character,’ he said.
Her joint interview with Ron comes as her campaign for the Republican presidential nomination struggles to gain traction in the polls.
The Florida governor trailed rival Donald Trump by 33 points in RealClearPolitics polling. The former president also leads in the key early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.
Casey DeSantis took the lead in talking about why her husband should be president, making the case for his candidacy.
She describes her husband as the ‘love of my life’ and the father of her children. He also talked about how he joined the military after the September 11th terrorist attacks and why he is the best person to be President of the United States.
‘He is the love of my life, father to my six, five and three years and a fighter for us to turn it around. I guess people know who he is. He was a JAG officer and deployed to Iraq with SEAL Team One to augment troops on the ground receiving a star for meritorious service. He saw 9/11 and wanted to give back to the country that had given him so much. He served in the United States Army. It says a lot about who he is and how he sees the country,’ he said.
He also pushed back against his own critics, who described him as a Lady Macbeth-like figure who secretly ran the Florida governor’s office and the DeSantis campaign. She has even been described as the ‘Wal-Mart Melania’ and America’s Karen.
‘The corporate media got one thing right: I shop at Walmart,’ he said.
‘They call you names to put you down. Number one thing, we don’t hold back when it comes to our family,’ Casey said.
Casey DeSantis talks about how her husband took care of her during her breast cancer treatment in an emotional campaign ad in 2022
Casey DeSantis held his first solo campaign event – joining voters in Iowa earlier this month
Casey DeSantis was blasted in Iowa for wearing a black leather jacket that read ‘Wake up and die’ – above as she wore the jacket as she stood next to her husband Ron DeSantis
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, right, shakes hands with his wife Casey and children Mason, left, Mamie and Madison, after being sworn in for a second term in January
Cassie and Ron DeSantis on their wedding day in 2009
In the interview, the two also talked about how they met.
The two – both golf lovers – met at a driving range at the University of North Florida.
He’s told the story many times: He was working on his swing and, outside of the golf ball, he looked around to see that someone had left an extra bucket of balls around the tees. Ron DeSantis, who was practicing nearby, thought he was checking on her.
They continued to talk. The rest is dating – and political – history.
‘Our son and daughter are playing golf, which is great because that’s how mom and dad met,’ Casey told Fox News.
Both DeSantis have spoken about their children several times in interviews. Children often join their parents on the campaign trail.
‘No two days are truly the same,’ says Ron DeSantis. ‘Our children are of course on summer holidays so they are not at school. We were just – my son just had FSU baseball camp. We did a tennis camp with the girls. But at the end of the day it’s more like a team effort. We bring them on the campaign trail as much as possible. And we want to spend as much family time as possible.’
And Casey DeSantis recently launched ‘Mamas for DeSantis’ – a national version of the group she started in Florida to help her husband win a second term as governor.
‘It’s one thing when your policies come out after us – uncles. It’s another thing when they come after our children. And that’s when the claws came out,’ she said.
Florida First Lady Ron DeSantis has become a prominent public face and voice for the presidential campaign.
In her speech in Johnston, Iowa, Casey promised to criss-cross the country to help her husband win the Republican presidential nomination and the White House.
‘As long as I have breath I will fight for Ron DeSantis – not just because he is my husband; That’s part of it – but it’s because I trust him,’ she said.
‘If you want someone to go to Washington DC to clean house, to get this country back on the trajectory we’re talking about – our rights coming from our Creator and our government being set up to protect our rights. It’s ours, he’s the man to do it and if I have to cross this country, I will,’ he vowed.
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