Ron DeSantis uses fake Winston Churchill quote as he drops out of US presidential race

Ron DeSantis attributed a fake Churchill quote as he dropped out of the US presidential race Credit: X/Ron DeSantis/PA

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis used a fake Sir Winston Churchill quote as he confirmed he was dropping out of the US presidential race.

Mr DeSantis dropped out of the campaign just days before the New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation primary on Tuesday.

It ended a White House bid that failed to meet expectations that he would emerge as a serious challenger to the former US president Donald Trump for the Republican nomination.

He uploaded a video announcing the suspension with the caption: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - attributing it to the iconic wartime prime minister.

According to the International Churchill Society, the quote was never used by Sir Winston Churchill.

The website reads: "We can find no attribution for either one of these, and you will find that they are broadly attributed to Winston Churchill.

"They are found nowhere in his canon, however.

"An almost equal number of sources found online credit these sayings to Abraham Lincoln -but we have found none that provides any attribution in the Lincoln Archives."

Some commentators believe part of the caption written by Mr DeSantis was actually used as part of a Budweiser advert from the 1930s.

Churchill was famous for his witticisms and well-known turns of phrase, but it is not the first time quotes have been falsely attributed to him.

Here at ITV News we have pulled together a list of some of the most famous quotes Sir Winston Churchill NEVER said, according to the International Churchill Society.

"Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen."

This fake quote is very often attributed to Churchill but appears nowhere in the Churchill canon.

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"If you’re going through hell, keep going."

The society has yet to see any correct attribution of this quote that frequently appears on the Internet and printed on motivation posters.

This fake quote is not a phrase that is contained anywhere in the canon of Winston Churchill’s written or spoken words.

"You make a living by what you get; you make a life by what you give."

This one comes up on many internet quote sites and was even reiterated in a 2005 TV ad. It’s a nice quote, but definitely not Winston Churchill.

“All this contains much that is obviously true, and much that is relevant; unfortunately, what is obviously true is not relevant, and what is relevant is not obviously true.”

This is not by Churchill, but Churchill quoting his colleague Arthur J. Balfour (Prime Minister, July 1902 to December 1905) in his book Great Contemporaries (London & New York, 1937, last reprinted 1990).

The citation is on page 250 of the first edition, in the chapter entitled “Arthur James Balfour”: “…’there were some things that were true, and some things that were trite; but what was true was trite, and what was not trite was not true’…”

Here are some of Sir Winston Churchill's most famous quotes that he DID say...

"Never surrender"

“We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing-grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender!”

House of Commons, June 4, 1940, following the evacuation of British and French armies from Dunkirk as the German tide swept through France.

'Finest hour'

"Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, ‘This was their Finest Hour."

House of Commons, June 18, 1940, following the collapse of France. Many thought Britain would follow.

The Few

"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.“

Tribute to the Royal Air Force, House of Commons, August 20, 1940. The Battle of Britain peaked a month later. Because of German bombing raids, Churchill said, Britain was “a whole nation fighting and suffering together.” He had worked out the phrase about “The Few” in his mind as he visited the Fighter Command airfields in Southern England.

"Captain of our souls"

“The mood of Britain is wisely and rightly averse from every form of shallow or premature exultation. This is no time for boasts or glowing prophecies, but there is this—a year ago our position looked forlorn, and well nigh desperate, to all eyes but our own. Today we may say aloud before an awe-struck world, ‘We are still masters of our fate. We still are captain of our souls.'”

House of Commons, 9 September 1941

'The end of the beginning'

“The Germans have received back again that measure of fire and steel which they have so often meted out to others. Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”

Lord Mayor’s Luncheon, Mansion House following the victory at El Alamein North Africa,  London, November 10, 1942.

Who was Sir Winston Churchill?

Sir Winston Churchill was an inspirational statesman, writer, orator and leader who led Britain to victory in the Second World War.

He served as Conservative Prime Minister twice - from 1940 to 1945 (before being defeated in the 1945 general election by the Labour leader Clement Attlee).

He then served again as Prime Minister from 1951 to 1955.

As well has his fame for leading the nation during the Second World War, Sir Winston Churchill was also awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1953 for his many published works.

He died in 1965 at the age of 90 and was honoured with a state funeral.

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