DeSantis loses steam in the primary race

Miami (BLAZETRENDS) with Disney, but, as the experts say, “in politics there is nothing impossible.”

“The calendar has not favored him,” the Republican analyst Alfonso Aguilar acknowledges to BLAZETRENDS in reference to the moment chosen by DeSantis to make official a candidacy that had been taken for granted for months and that he will finally reveal this coming week, according to his relatives. .

voting intention

Florida Governor Ron Desantis in a file photograph.  BLAZETRENDS/Giorgio Viera
Florida Governor Ron Desantis in a file photograph. BLAZETRENDS/Giorgio Viera

Polls reveal that the intention to vote for DeSantis is currently the lowest (less than 20%) since November 2022, when former President Donald Trump, who sponsored him to reach the governorship in 2018, surprised with a primary candidacy very advanced.

Already then it was known that the duel to keep the trick to fight for the White House with the Democratic presidential candidate, who will be the current president Joe Biden, was going to be between Trump and DeSantis who was reelected in 2022, this time by a great majority and without help from the former president.

The 44-year-old governor initially led in the polls despite not being officially a candidate, but now that he is about to be, Trump has a 34-45 point advantage.

Going back to Trump, a difficult task

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks in front of former US President Donald J. Trump (i), in a file photo.  BLAZETRENDS/Dan Anderson
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks in front of former US President Donald J. Trump (i), in a file photo. BLAZETRENDS/Dan Anderson

“It’s going to be hard to come back. Running against Trump is no small thing,” says Aguilar, senior vice president and political director of the American Media group, who believes that if the former president were not involved in the race, DeSantis would be an unbeatable Republican candidate.

“If after the announcement of his candidacy, there is a rebound” for DeSantis in the polls, it will be a very positive sign, he says.

Trump not only gained ground with voters, but also among congressmen and other Republican officials. “DeSantis has very few endorsements by comparison,” he says.

Attacking “Sanctimonius”

Former US President Donald Trump, in a file image. BLAZETRENDS/Cj Gunther

And recently the candidates in special elections in several states to whom DeSantis gave his support were defeated, as Trump was quick to point out, who does not miss an opportunity to attack “Sanctimonius” (prude), as he calls him.

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But the fact that DeSantis is apparently no longer such a promising candidate cannot be attributed solely to the timing of registration or Trump’s popularity.

His own actions and policies have also taken their toll on him.

Florida’s shift to the right based on controversial laws passed without difficulty in a state Congress dominated by the Republican Party has made it antagonistic to African-Americans, members of the LGTBQ+ community, and Latinos not only from their state but from the rest of the country, for not talk about women defenders of the right to abortion.

The conflict with Disney

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks during an act on April 2, 2023. BLAZETRENDS/Justin Lane
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in a file image. BLAZETRENDS/Justin Lane

But, in addition, he is stuck in a “mousetrap”, in the words of Trump, due to a conflict with Disney that has already resulted in the withdrawal of an investment by the group that is the largest employer in Florida and in a legal dispute with lawsuits and counterclaims always costly and exhausting.

The conflict began after the entertainment company publicly opposed a law promoted by the governor, known by its critics as “Don’t Say Gay.”

Shortly after, DeSantis responded by pushing a law to remove Disney’s self-government over its Orlando (Florida) possessions for more than 50 years, something the business group saw as “retaliation.”

Aguilar doesn’t think all of that will hurt DeSantis in the primary race. Those things count only in the “second chapter” of the elections, the presidential race itself, in which the candidates “reinvent themselves” to win more votes, says the analyst.

DeSantis’ main appeal to Republican voters is, according to this analyst, that he is “true to his values” and “authentic” and is willing to go against what he sees as wrong “clearly and decisively.” Being “strong” benefits him, he says

A “cum laude” graduate of Harvard and Yale universities, a former member of the Navy, legal adviser to the special forces in Iraq and a prosecutor at the Guantanamo prison, DeSantis is a “formidable” conservative candidate, according to Aguilar.

The pity is that he has Trump as a rival.

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