DeSantis uses debunked Churchill quote as parting words for 2024 campaign

Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) centered his presidential campaign suspension video around a debunked Winston Churchill quote.

In a campaign marked by missteps, the Florida governor ended his run for president with one last mistake. He captioned his suspension video on X, formerly known as Twitter, with a quote attributed to the renowned British prime minister, previously debunked by the International Churchill Society, then concluded his announcement with the quote.

FILE – Republican presidential candidate Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during a campaign event, Jan. 17, 2024, in Hampton, N.H. DeSantis has suspended his Republican presidential campaign after a disappointing showing in Iowa’s leadoff caucuses. He ended his White House bid Sunday, Jan. 21, after failing to meet lofty expectations that he would seriously challenge former President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

“Winston Churchill once remarked — Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts,” DeSantis said. “Thank you, and God bless.”


The quote is commonly attributed to Churchill, appearing on motivational posters and coffee mugs and across social media and the internet. However, the International Churchill Society previously found that the quote is fake. In its research of over 50 million words written by and about Churchill, including all of his books, articles, speeches, and papers, no such quote was found, according to the group.

The quote appears to be compiled from two separate quotes, in which he did say that “No one can guarantee success in war, but only deserve it,” and “Success always demands a greater effort.”