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Ron DeSantis Is the Fighter That Can Beat Donald Trump

If Ron DeSantis really wants to be president, he’ll run now, start swinging madly at all of his political foes, and wrestle his way to the top of America’s political system.

Ron DeSantis. Image Credit: Creative Commons.
Governor Ron DeSantis speaking with attendees at the 2021 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, Florida. Photo by Gage Skidmore .

The First Ron DeSantis Presidential Ad Drops: Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis has been dancing around the fact that he intends to run for president in 2024.

Yet, according to multiple insiders, the Florida governor will announce his run after the Florida legislative session ends in May.

That is despite DeSantis’ numbers in the polls having gone from being ahead of former President Donald J. Trump to now being below the forty-fifth president’s overall poll numbers (although, compared to the other GOP presidential candidates, DeSantis remains the likeliest alternative to Trump).

Given the decline in polling that DeSantis has suffered, some have suggested that DeSantis should just wait until 2028.

No, he should not.

DeSantis still has nine months to go before Republican voters even head to the polls. 

I’d have preferred it if he had come out of the proverbial gate swinging rather than sitting on the fence for as long as he has, but that’s okay. DeSantis is a competent and qualified leader. He can still right the campaign and slam Trump.

DeSantis Won’t Back Down

The ad in question comes from an independent group that supports DeSantis’ potential presidential bid. The Super PAC is doing a $3.1 million ad buy in key battleground states featuring its “Never Back Down” ad. The ad serves as a decent, quick introduction to who Ron DeSantis is—a former Navy man, a Blue-Collar guy who made it on his own—and what he stands for. What the Super PAC wants potential voters to know is that Ron DeSantis is a fighter. 

Being declared by Republican voters as a “fighter” is the greatest compliment a GOP politician can receive. In an age of onerous government mandates, impositions upon our civil liberties, and stifling political correctness, the Republicans are sensitive to the fact that this upcoming election might be the last free and open election in our country’s history. 

They are not looking for another nice guy to talk to them about tax cuts and bombing more Mideast countries. The Republican voters want a candidate who will stand up to their enemies and prevent the Democrats from imposing their political agenda upon our ailing country. 

Republican voters also want a candidate in 2024 who they believe represents them and their interests. The reason that Donald Trump was so effective in 2016 was because the Republican base was reacting to what they viewed as a series of betrayals by the GOP Establishment. 

First, the Republicans in Washington spent years neutering and coopting the grassroots Tea Party movement. Second, in 2012, the base wanted a conservative firebrand who would take it unapologetically to the Left. Instead, they got the wallflower, Mitt Romney. When 2016 came around, the base would not compromise with what they believed were treacherous and out-of-touch party leaders. 

With the Republicans having lost every national election since the 2018 Midterms, coupled with the severe sense of grievance that Trump imparted onto the party in the wake of his own defeat in 2020, the base will not go for another Mitt Romney-type Blue Blood establishment Republican

As if addressing concerns (conveniently raised by the Trump Campaign) among the base that DeSantis is some kind of a “Deep State” plant who receives funding from the dreaded George Soros, the pro-DeSantis Super PAC has started its stealth campaign for a DeSantis presidential bid by highlighting DeSantis’ fighting spirit. 

DeSantis is Not Moving Fast Enough

Of course, this is not enough. 

Frankly, this is the sort of ad that should’ve come out last Fall, shortly after Trump had made his announcement that he was again running for president. I am glad to see, though, that the rumors of DeSantis’ pending presidential announcement appear to be correct. DeSantis has an uphill battle ahead of him. Despite the challenge of overcoming Trump (whose bark is louder than his bite), though, DeSantis’ time to run—and become—president is now, not in 2028.

The fact is, Ron DeSantis is a fighter. He continues pushing decisively conservative policies in his state of Florida. He comes across as a happy warrior, too—the kind of person that both the Republican base wants and the same kind of personality that attracted the base to Trump in the first place. 

Unlike Trump, though, DeSantis has a governing record of significant achievement in a relatively short time. What’s more, DeSantis’ heroic stance on COVID-19 when even then-President Trump was irate that DeSantis was opposing the White House’s COVID-19 policies (mainly the national lockdown), makes him more MAGA than even Donald Trump. 

Now, DeSantis must contend with the vicious counterattacks from his great rival, the Disney Corporation, as they move to sue the Florida governor for his stance on revoking Disney’s special status in the Reedy Creek Improvement District (where Walt Disney World is located in Orlando). 

This, more than his impending fight with the mad, orange fireball that is Donald Trump, will be DeSantis’ Waterloo. If DeSantis is seen as being defeated by the Walt Disney Corporation or outmaneuvered by them, his tenuous standing in the part going into 2024 will collapse. 

Ron DeSantis Needs to Go Farther and Hit Trump Harder NOW

If DeSantis can craft a deeper strategy of proving he’s a fighter—and an effective one at that—compared to Trump’s endless (and ultimately fruitless) bluster, then Florida’s governor will be the Republican Party’s nominee in 2024. 

Unlike Trump, DeSantis is polling far better in a head-to-head matchup against “Sleepy” Joe Biden who seems intent on replicating his infamous “Basement Strategy” from 2020. The reason Biden is doing this phone-it-in style of presidential campaign is because it worked so effectively against Donald Trump. And, according to most polls, if Biden faces Trump, then Biden will beat Trump yet again. 

Republicans need to change that particular equation. No other Republican running for president today stands as good of a chance at knocking Trump out as does DeSantis. That DeSantis is MAGA himself is an added bonus. If the Republicans are serious about beating the Democrats in 2024, they’ll place DeSantis as their nominee. 

If Ron DeSantis really wants to be president, he’ll run now, start swinging madly at all of his political foes, and wrestle his way to the top of America’s political system. But he needs to stop telling voters he’s a fighter. DeSantis needs to start showing them that he is. And he does that by going hard and fast at Donald Trump before Trump can define DeSantis in the minds of most Republican voters.

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A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.

Written By

Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who recently became a writer for Weichert is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as a contributing editor at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (March 28), and Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.