According to 2024 Republican Party polling trends conducted by Reuters/Ipsos, there has been a net 16-point increase in support for Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis between April 6 and June 9. In that time, DeSantis’ main opponent for the Republican presidential nomination, former President Donald J. Trump, was up by 37 points in April over DeSantis. It dropped to a 30-point lead in May. By the month of June, Trump’s lead fell to 21 points.
If these trends persist, in another three months, Trump and DeSantis should be in a virtual tie. In fact, DeSantis and Trump already are in the key battleground state of Iowa. Trump’s constant—manic—attacks on DeSantis are a dead giveaway just how close to Trump that DeSantis is getting in the polls.
Ron DeSantis Scares Trump
It’s scaring the forty-fifth president, who is presently fighting for his freedom in the ongoing legal crises that he faces. Should Trump be unable to win the 2024 election, he will not be able to pardon himself (though it is likely safe to say that a President Ron DeSantis would, in fact, pardon Trump).
As Trump has spent his time rage-truthing on his social media site and calling DeSantis names, the Florida governor has dedicated himself to building a competitive ground game in key battleground states, like Iowa (hence, his virtual tie with Trump there).
For all the caterwauling from Trump and his supporters about the “Deep State”, it is the DeSantis Campaign that has been working on an in-depth plan for reforming the FBI, Department of Justice (DOJ), and the wider intelligence community (IC).
Trump, the master of just winging it, has decided to spend his time complaining about all his grievances from the last eight years. That might make the billionaire feel better about himself. But it does little to further the MAGA cause or to get the Republicans closer to the White House.
Increasingly, the forty-fifth president seems to be completely dominated by his obsession with the past whereas most Americans, regardless of party, want to dream of the future. They want political candidates who will articulate a vision for achieving a better tomorrow—and those voters will support the candidate whose plan is the best.
Since Trump is preternaturally incapable of planning, one can expect his original double-digit lead of DeSantis to be winnowed down the closer we move to the actual debates in the GOP Primary, simply because Trump cannot focus or plan for anything other than his next social media rant.
Trump is Too Toxic
Then there are all the legal woes that Trump is facing. It’s true that most Republican voters are sympathetic to Trump’s plight (and are open to his accusations that the investigations are nothing more than politically charged witch hunts).
It is also true, though, that upwards of 70 percent of Americans polled don’t want to see either Trump or President Joe Biden run for reelection in 2024 precisely because of their legal problems (while Trump has been indicted for mishandling classified documents, Biden, who was proven to have done the same throughout his career in government, has not been charged).
Not to mention the fact that the ABC News/Ipsos poll I referenced above clearly indicates how three-in-five Americans believe Trump’s mishandling of classified documents was a serious crime. What’s more, most Americans (48 percent polled) think that Trump should be charged for those serious crimes.
And when you marry that to Trump’s continual approval rating of about 31 percent, you see that Trump is incapable of winning over enough voters to allow for him to beat the Democrats in 2024.
Donald Trump was an anomaly in American politics. Coming from the high-end real estate and entertainment worlds, he alone was the only person who could have disrupted the Clinton Crime Family in 2016. He likely saved this country from untold amounts of damage (of the sort that is now being inflicted upon us by the Biden Syndicate).
Sadly, though, Trump’s usefulness to the ailing Right quickly dissipated shortly after entering the White House. Today, he is the wrong weapon for today’s war; he was useful for fighting—and winning—yesterday’s war.
Things are completely different these days.
Trump Outlived His Usefulness
Americans lived through Trump’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic. They’ve not forgotten his uneven and chaotic leadership style that appeared to exacerbate the country’s problems back then (the exact opposite of what a good leader does during a national crisis).
At the same time, Joe Biden is deeply unpopular because, despite positive economic data, most Americans are not feeling that their economic circumstances are matching the cozy data that official government sources are putting out to try to calm voters as we enter the 2024 Presidential Elections (Washington is deeply fearful of a Republican return to power).
The American people are yearning for a new page being turned in American politics. They’re tired of the rancor and divisiveness that both the Democrats and former President Trump offer them.
The polling data proves that Trump’s victory in the GOP Primary is not assured, despite his braggadocio. Trump and his team see the same polling data and they’re scared. Especially because, as DeSantis’ support grows among likely Republican voters, the DeSantis campaign’s already massive war chest grows.
The DeSantis Campaign has nothing to worry about. They are just getting started in terms of support and success. The DeSantis team is smart and disciplined. They are preparing the battlefield for the inevitable clash between Trump and DeSantis. Trump, meanwhile, is pure bluster. He vamps and bullies while DeSantis plans and organizes. Give it a little more time and DeSantis will be tied with Trump—and will ultimately beat Trump.
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 (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.