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(LifeSiteNews) – Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis responded to former President Donald Trump’s suggestion that banning abortion at six weeks may be “too harsh,” reaffirming his support for the law he signed in April and noting that his presumptive rival for the Republican presidential nomination neglected to answer whether he would have signed the same law.

On Monday, Trump said in an interview that “if you look at what DeSantis did, a lot of people don’t even know if he knew what he was doing. But he signed six weeks, and many people within the pro-life movement feel that that was too harsh.” Asked if he would sign a similar law, Trump said simply that he was “looking at many alternatives.”

The comments came amid several weeks of consternation between pro-lifers and Trump, who has raised doubts as to whether he would support a federal abortion ban now that the overturn of Roe v. Wade has enabled states to legislate on the issue, and repeatedly stressed that any law he might sign must include exceptions for rape, incest, and to save a mother’s life.

Asked about the exchange at an event the next day, DeSantis responded, “Protecting an unborn child when there’s a detectable heartbeat is something that almost, probably 99% of pro-lifers support. It’s something that other states like Iowa under Gov. Kim Reynolds have enacted, and I think that as a Florida resident, he didn’t give an answer about ‘would you have signed the heartbeat bill that Florida did.’ It had all the exceptions that people talked about, the legislature put it in. I signed the bill. I was happy to do it. He won’t answer whether he would sign it or not.”

The answer is the closest DeSantis, who has not yet announced his candidacy but is expected to within the next few weeks, has come to explicitly criticizing Trump, who since last November has been attacking the governor on an almost daily basis. It may suggest that DeSantis will soon begin campaigning, complete with a new approach to the former president.

On Wednesday morning, Trump posted to his Truth Social platform a declaration that he feels the pro-life movement owes him for its current prospects, once more without clarifying his position on federal abortion legislation.

“After 50 years of failure, with nobody coming even close, I was able to kill Roe v. Wade, much to the ‘shock’ of everyone, and for the first time put the Pro Life movement in a strong negotiating position over the Radicals that are willing to kill babies even into their 9th month, and beyond,” he wrote. “Without me there would be no 6 weeks, 10 weeks, 15 weeks, or whatever is finally agreed to. Without me the pro Life movement would have just kept losing. Thank you President TRUMP!!!”

Trump currently holds a substantial lead in national polls for the Republican nomination, which his surrogates say should be taken to declare the primary over. But DeSantis is competitive in state primary polls, and it remains to be seen what will happen once competition for Republican votes begins in earnest.