Why Florida’s DeSantis could be the cure for an ailing America
Vengeful Democrats investigating the January 6 riots may help elect Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis president in 2024. Good for them; the nation is grateful.
In spending weeks and months conducting their one-sided hearings into the riots at the Capitol, Democrats have undermined the standing of former President Donald J. Trump. There is no question that the made-for-TV show trial has taken a toll; polling confirms that Americans, including many Republicans, are disgusted by Trump’s behavior during those consequential hours.
Trump increasingly has baggage, the kind of baggage that caused Hillary Clinton to lose in 2016. When you run for president, it is not helpful if a majority of the country considers you dishonest and untrustworthy. That’s where Clinton was in the summer of 2016; that’s where Trump is now.
Democrats are congratulating themselves on this achievement. A recent Bloomberg piece was titled: “Good news for Democrats: Even Republicans are Tiring of Trump.” The story says the hearings have turned off a lot of “soft Trump” voters and Independents who are ready to “move on.”
But in possibly sidelining Trump, Democrats have unquestionably furthered the fortunes of DeSantis who, on many matrices, could be a much tougher opponent that Trump. They may in fact have cost themselves the White House in 2024.
To say that Democrats are vulnerable in 2024 is an understatement. Unless things change drastically, Democrats are in for a contentious primary season, as Democratic politicians like California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer position themselves for a run.
President Joe Biden’s epically low approval ratings and seeming mental decline make a primary challenge almost inevitable, if indeed he is still in office two years from now.
Not only is their party’s leader failing, but Democrats have zero record to run on.
According to a recent Monmouth poll, in which Biden scored a miserable 36% approval rating, voters’ top concerns are inflation, gas prices and everyday bills. Those issues are followed by abortion, gun rights, health care costs, job security, college tuition, housing costs and crime.
On which of those issues have Democrats moved the needle? None. They talk a lot about what they are going to do, but voters are asking…where have you been? You control all three branches of government and our problems have only gotten worse.
As a result, Democrats are chiefly campaigning against Donald Trump, even in this midterm season when the former president is not on the ballot. That’s what the January 6 hearings are all about; that’s why there is prime time coverage. They want voters to connect GOP candidates to Trump while blackening Trump’s reputation. They are even throwing money into the primary campaigns of Trump-endorsed candidates, hoping the connection will make them unelectable.
If Democrats are successful in pushing Trump aside, other Republicans will step up, including DeSantis, who is the clear front-runner at present.
As opposed to Democrats, DeSantis will have a popular and convincing platform. He will run on bringing back common sense law enforcement, restoring effective control of our southern border, pushing for energy independence and encouraging businesses with sound regulatory and tax policies.
In other words, he will run on America First policies.
He will also campaign on facing down the howling leftists who have coopted the Democratic Party and their allies in the teachers’ unions and the media.
A recent Quinnipiac poll showed 71% of voters do not want Biden to run again; 64% said they do not wish Donald Trump to run again. Only 35% of those surveyed have a positive opinion of Joe Biden while 58% do not; 37% approve of Trump and 55% disapprove.
In the same survey, DeSantis scores only a 31% approval rating but 35% say they don’t know enough about him. He has room – and time – to grow.
In the next two years, voters can get to know the Florida governor, who formerly served five years in Congress. His CV is impressive: he is a graduate of Yale University and Harvard Law School. He joined the Navy in 2004 and served in Iraq.
Since (barely) being elected governor in 2018, DeSantis has burnished his reputation as a fearless opponent of today’s woke culture warriors, banning gender indoctrination from Florida’s schools and taking on Disney for kowtowing to the left.
More important, he successfully guided his state through the challenges of COVID-19 without resorting to the draconian shut-downs that plagued blue states like New York and California. Florida’s schools mostly stayed open, masks were recommended but not mandatory and ditto for vaccines. Treating residents like adults paid off: the elderly, which comprise a large share of Florida’s population, had a higher vaccination rate than California, and – age-adjusted – COVID deaths were roughly the same between the two states.
DeSantis was pilloried for what the liberal media characterized as reckless and dangerous management of his state during the pandemic. But a National Bureau of Economic Research paper ranked Florida 28th in mortality (compared to California which placed 27th), third in the least school days lost to the pandemic and 13th in its economic performance. California’s lockdowns, by comparison, placed the state 40th on its economic outcome and 50th on in-person schooling. No comparison.
DeSantis has a record to run on, and his 2024 campaign is underway. First he must be re-elected governor this November. Polls show he will likely face off against Democrat Charlie Crist, a former Florida governor, who is leading the primary race, and that DeSantis is ahead by about 8 points. DeSantis has raised over $100 million; insiders suggest he may raise as much as $200 million in this cycle, a good amount of which can go toward a presidential run.
That he is gearing up for 2024 is obvious. In a recent speech, DeSantis blasted President Biden, saying “He came in and cranked the printing presses, kneecapped American energy, and he also opened our southern border.”
In addition, he wished “Joe Biden a speedy recovery from COVID. And I want to wish America a speedy recover from Joe Biden.” And Ron DeSantis could well be the cure.
Published on Fox News