Reports of Ron DeSantis’s political death have been greatly exaggerated

Reports of Ron DeSantis’s political death have been greatly exaggerated. By Dave Seminara.

A bipartisan Coalition of the Willing that includes the last two presidents, the media and nearly everyone else on the left, plus Trump loyalists, has united to try to sink Ron DeSantis’s candidacy before it begins.

DeSantis has been savaged by the press for keeping Florida open during the pandemic and for fighting culture wars, yet voters still gave him a nearly twenty-point win in November. At that time, however, the right was united behind him. Can he now survive amid more relentless and bipartisan attacks? …


Trump and his team have attacked the man he calls “DeSanctus” or “DeSanctimonius” while ignoring the other declared and undeclared candidates, whom he apparently perceives as non-factors.

The ex-president, who lives in Florida, has portrayed his adopted home state as if it were one of his fabled “shithole countries,” even though it’s the fastest growing state in the country. Trump has repeatedly claimed that crime has spiraled under DeSantis’s watch, even though it recently reached a fifty-year low, according to the 2021 Annual Uniform Crime report. He’s praised Charlie Crist, the Democrat DeSantis walloped by nineteen points in November, and has dubiously claimed that New York did better with Covid than Florida.

This week on his Truth Social platform, Trump shared a chart showing that California, Texas, Florida and New York had the most Covid cases. “So, explain. Why did Ron DeSanctus do a good job? Highly overrated. New York had fewer Covid Cases!” Trump failed to note that the Covid case rankings closely followed the population order: Florida has nearly three million more residents than New York. The post still received nearly 10,000 likes.

DeSantis is charisma free? Perhaps, but he gets things done — which would make a nice change:

The media is promoting a narrative that he lacks the charisma and ability to do the kind of retail politicking necessary to be president. There’s no question that DeSantis is on the serious side and has rubbed some people the wrong way over the years. …

Too conservative for some donors:

There are also some in the billionaire donor class who dislike his conservative positions on social issues and want him to move left.


Trump has also racked up lots of endorsements (most of them meaningless in the scheme of things) and he’s gotten a bump in national polls since the Bragg indictment, which is exactly what Democrats hoped would happen.

But although Trump has a big lead, DeSantis is still performing quite well for an undeclared candidate, particularly in state polls, which are more insightful than national ones, and in head-to-head matchups against Joe Biden. For example, a recent Franklin and Marshall University poll found that DeSantis trails Trump by just six points in critical Pennsylvania. And a recent Wall Street Journal poll has DeSantis beating Biden by three points, with Trump losing to him by the same margin. …

Everyone’s stuck on Trump:

A substantial portion of the Republican base is still stuck on Trump, the left wants him to get the nomination, and the media understands that he produces clicks and ratings. So the awkward left-right Coalition of the Willing is portraying Trump as an invincible candidate now.

But I see many parallels between Trump and Hillary Clinton. Clinton had similarly high unfavorable ratings when she launched presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2016. In 2008, she had the same huge early lead over Obama and other Democrats that Trump now enjoys. But the more voters heard from her, the less they liked her. Then, in 2016, Democrats made a massive blunder in handing her the nomination, despite her poor favorability ratings, because it was “her turn.”

Trump is now essentially running on Hillary’s “it’s my turn” platform. In every interview, he rails against DeSantis for disloyalty. He’s up in the polls but rarely cracks 50 percent.

A recent AP-NORC poll indicated that 44 percent of Republicans and 70 percent of Americans don’t want him to run for president. Since Trump’s 2016 triumph, the Republican Party has lost 41 seats in the 2018 midterms, both seats in the Georgia runoff, and the White House in 2020, while performing poorly in the 2022 midterms. Republican voters need to decide if they want to walk into the trap the left is setting for them by staying loyal to this man.

Interesting choice to make.