DeSantis ready to run the presidential gauntlet

by | May 24, 2023

  • Florida Governor Ron DeSantis expected to announce his candidacy for the 2024 presidential race on Twitter during a conversation with Elon Musk.
  • DeSantis utilizes social media and conservative media appearances, following Trump’s successful tactics.
  • DeSantis gains popularity among Republican primary voters due to firm stances on divisive issues and combative leadership style.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is expected to announce his candidacy for the 2024 presidential race on Wednesday night. Having emerged after the COVID-19 pandemic as a bold conservative and potential successor to Donald Trump, DeSantis is slated to appear on a Twitter live stream conversation with Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur and owner of the social media platform. According to multiple reports, his announcement is expected to come at 6 p.m. EDT and will be followed by a series of appearances on popular conservative shows, including Fox News and the Mark Levin radio program.

The 44-year-old Governor’s distinct choice of platform is a tactical move that echoes Trump’s successful utilization of social media during his own rise to political prominence. Musk has recently made headlines for reinstating the Twitter accounts of several notable Republicans, including Trump, following his acquisition of the platform.

Recent polling from Morning Consult indicates DeSantis’ growing popularity among Republican primary voters, placing him second only to Trump with 18% support. His rise in popularity has been fueled by his firm stances on contentious issues, which DeSantis has successfully cast as purging political- and ideologically-driven agendas from college campuses, K-12 classrooms, and corporate boardrooms.

The Governor’s signature combative style and decisive actions, such as offering bonuses to police officers relocating to Florida and standing firm on his support for the controversial Parental Rights in Education bill, have helped grow his reputation among conservatives. His recent efforts to counter Disney’s perceived ‘woke’ agenda were largely well-received by his constituents, despite the ensuing legal battles.

Yet, the path to the nomination is far from certain. Already in the race are former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson. Former Vice President Mike Pence is also expected to announce his own run soon. Despite his current popularity, DeSantis still lags considerably behind Trump in polling numbers.

The former president has not hesitated to take swipes at DeSantis, publicly labeling him as “DeSanctimonious” and “unelectable.” Whether DeSantis will retaliate with equal fervor remains to be seen and could significantly influence the trajectory of the primary campaign. Tonight’s announcement comes amidst legal proceedings involving Trump, who pleaded not guilty to charges of falsifying business records at the Trump Organization. The ensuing trial, tentatively scheduled for March 25, coincides with the peak of the presidential primary season.

The GOP caucuses and primaries are fast approaching, set to commence in Iowa on January 22, 2024, and in New Hampshire on January 30, respectively. The first large wave of states will cast their votes for the presidential primary on Super Tuesday in March 2024.


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