Ron DeSantis 2024 Already Dead? Getting out to an early lead has its disadvantages. You attract a lot of attention and a lot of respect as a competitor, which inspires a more forceful resistance. Take the Boston Bruins, for example, who set a regular-season NHL record for wins this season before losing last night in the first round of the playoffs to the wild card Florida Panthers. The Panthers, imbued with respect for how talented and accomplished the Bruins were, played at the absolute zenith of their ability.
You see something similar playing board games around the kitchen table. Ever get out to an early lead in Catan? Suddenly everyone else in the game is teaming up against you, blocking you, stealing your resources. The result is often that the early frontrunner wilts under the combined resistance, allowing someone else to flourish and take the lead.
That’s not unlike what happens in politics. Someone gets big, so naturally, the rest of the pack starts focusing on that person to bring them back down to Earth. Witness the way people started gunning for Hillary Clinton when she was the frontrunner in 2008, or Jeb Bush when he was the frontrunner in 2016. Being out front early can cause problems. Just ask Florida Governor Ron DeSantis – the guy was leading GOP polls a few months ago, but now lags significantly behind former President Donald Trump.
GOP Staring to Turn on Ron DeSantis
DeSantis was on top of the world last November. He won re-election in the Florida gubernatorial race with a stunning 20-point margin. Crowds were chanting his name, encouraging him to run for president. Meanwhile, Donald Trump, who’d had a stranglehold on the GOP since 2016, appeared to be faltering. DeSantis’s window appeared to be opening; he even led Trump in various polls.
But then of course, people started paying more attention to Ron DeSantis. People started criticizing Ron DeSantis. They started asking questions.
Is DeSantis personable enough to be president? Does he have that Bill Clinton ability to work the room? Is DeSantis just a wannabe Trump? Is DeSantis running too far to the right?
The questions and criticisms have taken their toll. The cumulative effect has contributed to DeSantis slipping in the polls, falling far behind Donald Trump.
Don’t Count DeSantis Out
DeSantis does retain one significant advantage over Trump, however. DeSantis has money.
“As [DeSantis] prepares to enter the presidential race in the coming weeks DeSantis sits atop accounts poised to support his candidacy that total more than $110 million, according to public filings and people who represent the entities,” POLITICO reported. “And that’s all without him opening an official campaign committee account.”
“If DeSantis gets in, he’s going to have a huge amount of momentum and I think the donor class and the raiser class are going to be with him,” one fundraiser said. “The people I speak to are either major donors or major raisers. For a time now, it has been very clear to me from my conversations around the country with those people that they are hoping DeSantis gets in the race and I think their money will follow.”
So, DeSantis will be well funded – but he’ll need to recover from his fast start.
Harrison Kass is the Senior Editor at 19FortyFive. An attorney, pilot, guitarist, and minor pro hockey player, Harrison joined the US Air Force as a Pilot Trainee but was medically discharged. Harrison holds a BA from Lake Forest College, a JD from the University of Oregon, and an MA from New York University. Harrison listens to Dokken.