As you’ve probably noticed by now, Donald Trump is deeply concerned about the prospect of having to run against Ron DeSantis for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, hence the online meltdowns, the mean nicknames, the suggestion the governor groomed high school girls while working as a teacher, and the claim that his would-be opponent pushes old people off of cliffs. (Contrast this with him basically welcoming Nikki Haley’s candidacy with open arms.)
While DeSantis has not announced that he will make a bid for the White House in 2024, all signs suggest he will. And yet, according to a new report, Trump thinks a few more finely crafted attacks could convince the governor to sit this round out.
Axios’s Mike Allen reports that Trump is “convinced his attacks on Ron DeSantis are chipping away at the Florida governor‘s support and confidence,“ according to people familiar with the matter. Certain that the offensive is working, the ex-president is reportedly “planning to amp up the attacks and name-calling in the coming weeks,” which he believes could “scare DeSantis out of running” or damage his chances of winning the GOP nomination should the governor enter the race. Thus far, Trump’s apparent favorite nickname to hit DeSantis with has been Ron “DeSanctimonious,” though he’s also mixed in “Meatball Ron” and “Shutdown Ron.” It’s legitimately shocking that he hasn’t yet rolled out a “Ron the Con” or “Con DeSantis” or “Liddle Ron,” given, in the case of the latter, his obsession with his perceived enemies’ heights (and DeSantis’s choice of footwear.)
Nickname-based attacks aside, Axios notes that Trump also plans to go after DeSantis over:
– The governor’s previous support for cutting Medicare and Social security. (Earlier this week, Trump called him a “wheelchair over the cliff kind of guy.”);
– His “disloyalty to Trump after he helped DeSantis get elected governor in 2018.” (Last month, Trump claimed DeSantis shed actual tears while begging the then president for his endorsement);
– Being unlikable;
– Being “a lackey of former House Speaker Paul Ryan,” who has long dreamed of gutting Medicare, Social Security, and other “entitlements”;
– His response to COVID, which \went from closing beaches and businesses to banning mask and vaccine mandates while refusing to shut down anything. (Trump believes DeSantis should be nailed for that initial flash of sanity.);
– Being “wishy-washy” on the war in Ukraine. (For his part, Trump has claimed the whole thing never would have happened on his watch because he’s such good pals with Vladimir Putin. The former president has also said that he knows a way to end the war “immediately,” but for whatever reason, cannot disclose it at this time).
Speaking to Fox News this week, DeSantis said that he views Trump‘s attacks as “background noise,“ adding: “He used to say how great of a governor I was. And then I win a big victory and all of a sudden, you know, he had different opinions. And so you could take that for what it’s worth.” Last month, a Yahoo News/YouGov poll put Trump eight points ahead of the governor.
Obviously it remains to be seen whether Trump will successfully “scare” DeSantis out of announcing a bid for office. The one thing that remains as clear as ever is that neither man should be allowed to run the country.
Speaking of the many reasons a potential DeSantis presidency is just as worrisome as a Trump one…
The governor is apparently fine with giving leadership positions to people who think certain types of water can make you gay.
Per CNN’s KFILE:
On Monday, the Republican governor appointed Ron Peri, an Orlando-based former pastor and the CEO of The Gathering—a Christian ministry focused on outreach to men—as one of five people who will now oversee the Reedy Creek Improvement District, the government body that has given Disney unique powers in Central Florida for more than half a century…. A CNN KFile review of Peri’s past comments found that he frequently made derogatory remarks about the LGBTQ community.
“So why are there homosexuals today? There are any number of reasons, you know, that are given. Some would say the increase in estrogen in our societies. You know, there’s estrogen in the water from birth control pills. They can’t get it out,” Peri baselessly said in a January 2022 Zoom discussion, later put on YouTube. “The level of testosterone in men broadly in America has declined by 50 points in the past 10 years. You know, and so, maybe that’s a part of it.”
As CNN notes, the absurd idea that certain chemicals in tap water can turn someone gay has been a popular one among conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones, who once said that a lot of frogs had been turned gay from drinking water.
As for DeSantis’s pal Peri, he’s not only a conspiracy theorist but apparently a bigot too, having called homosexuality “shameful,” and saying, “There are a lot of unhealthy effects of a homosexual lifestyle. There are diseases, but it goes beyond that.”
In other news out of the Sunshine State…
This is a fun one:
A Republican state senator in Florida has introduced a bill that, if passed, would require bloggers who write about Gov. Ron DeSantis, his Cabinet or state legislators to register with the state. Sen. Jason Brodeur’s bill, titled “Information Dissemination,” would also require bloggers to disclose who’s paying them for their posts about certain elected officials and how much. “If a blogger posts to a blog about an elected state officer and receives, or will receive, compensation for that post, the blogger must register” with the appropriate office within five days of the post, the legislation says.
Failing to register would result in a fine of $25 a day, and the penalty would be capped at $2,500 per posting, NBC affiliate WFLA of Tampa reported.
Given that DeSantis has recently backed legislation that would make it easier to sue the press, we can safely assume he’d be all for this.
Apparently the fiancée of the ex-president’s son isn’t a huge draw these days