It’s no secret that since Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign began, things have been going as smoothly as when Urban Meyer was at the Jugs. Negative process stories about the campaign (some of which I believe have been exaggerated) have resulted in weeks of negative press cycles that Governor DeSantis and his team are trying to dispel. I had a hard time.
That’s what makes Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate pivotal for DeSantis, who built national prominence by seizing this moment and turning it into political gold. It would be ill-advised for him to go on the offensive, but he must seize this moment in Milwaukee to revitalize the campaign and show the American public the positivity and ability to confuse his political opponents that elevated him in the first place. must.
Such debates can give some candidates a boost, like Donald Trump after his “Rosie O’Donnell” moment. As a result, the other candidates will collapse like a black hole and never hear from you again (Rick Perry, I’m talking to you)
With former President Trump choosing not to attend, he expects other candidates to attack DeSantis to establish himself as a leading “Trump alternative.”
Vivek Ramaswamy is likely to be the governor’s toughest critic, and DeSantis’ Super PAC agrees. Ramaswamy has moved up to number three in a recent Fox News poll, making him a likely finalist for the governor of Florida.
Ramaswamy has made it central to his campaign to be a “free speech” absolutist and a real “anti-awakening” candidate. He will seek to defile the governor’s “war on wake” platform that has been central to DeSantis’ campaign.
Ramaswami, in particular, will say that Florida’s new law banning hate speech against private property is attacking the “market of ideas.” Ramaswamy also said he would not go after Disney immediately and would likely attack the governor only after giving the company “special protection.”
Mike Pence and Chris Christie, two men with the glorious honor of working for Trump and then being thrown under the bus by former President Trump, criticized DeSantis for not being “true conservatives.” will condemn. Like Ramaswamy, they will criticize the governor’s legal action against Disney.
But they will say Mr. DeSantis’ actions are not typical of conservative governors who use state power against private corporations for speech. I expect Christie and, to a lesser extent, Pence, to criticize DeSantis and other candidates for being too cold about Trump.
Senator Tim Scott and former Governor Nikki Haley, both of South Carolina, are both running what I like to call benevolent conservative campaigns. But their message has yet to hit national polls. Additionally, Scott’s campaign burn rate is the highest of any candidate running for office. Both candidates need donations from their successes in the debates.
Haley will likely attack Mr. DeSantis over his conflicting perceptions of Ukraine. Haley is running as a traditional pro-defense Republican who believes U.S. involvement in the war in Ukraine is critical to national security. Scott is soft-spoken and probably won’t get aggressive. But I expect moderators to ask questions about Scott’s criticism of Florida’s new African American history guidelines.
I like North Dakota Governor Doug Burgham. he has the best hair Official portrait on the field. But he’ll probably be drowned out in a barrage of personal attacks that only ends when Brett Byer concludes the debate.
Wednesday will be a game day for DeSantis. Or, as the great poet The Beastie Boys said, “Get out of the house, don’t disturb me.”
Top photo: Governor Ron DeSantis visiting Florida State University in Jacksonville on July 18, 2022.Will Brown Jacksonville today