CHARLOTTE (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — South Carolina Senator Tim Scott announced his ambitions for the White House in North Charleston on Monday, and he was welcomed with open arms by Former President Donald Trump — a stark difference from Trump’s recent interactions with another potential presidential hopeful, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Trump isn’t just Scott’s new opponent though, they’ve been colleagues and allies for many years. After Scott kicked off his official campaign for President, Trump released a statement on Truth Social: “Good luck to Senator Tim Scott in entering the Republican Presidential Primary Race. It is rapidly loading up with lots of people, and Tim is a big step up from Ron Desanctimonious, who is totally unelectable. I got opportunity zones done with Tim, a big deal that has been highly successful. Good luck Tim!”

Trump has obviously been singing a far different tune when referencing DeSantis.

“The fake news is up there saying, will you run against the president? Will you run? And [DeSantis] says, ‘I have no comment’. That’s not supposed to happen. ‘I have no comment’. So I’m not I’m not a big fan,” Trump said during a recent speech.

Eric Heberlig, a political science professor at UNC Charlotte, doesn’t think Trump’s sudden disdain for DeSantis is personal, but rather a clear political strategy.

“Whoever is the main challenger to Trump is going to be the target of Trump’s higher the name calling the type of tactics that were familiar with over the past number of years. So since DeSantis, has been the primary competitor to this point, Trump’s fire has been directed at DeSantis.”

As for Trump’s positive response to Scott entering the race, Dr. Michael Bitzer, a political science professor at Catawba College, says Trump could see more candidates entering the race as potentially diluting DeSantis’ chances of securing the nomination.

“I think Donald Trump sees that the more Republican candidates in the field that could potentially benefit him,” Bitzer continued, “He is very willing to have positive things to say as long as a candidate doesn’t pose a threat.”

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is expected to officially announce that he’s running for president later this week.