Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is expected to announce his 2024 presidential bid this evening.
DeSantis, who currently ranks second in the latest Republican primary polling, is expected to make the announcement during a live stream video on Twitter as part of a conversation with billionaire Elon Musk.
Morning Consult polling of Republican primary voters released last week puts former president Donald Trump at 61% support with DeSantis in second at 18% support.
“Governor DeSantis has been the primary vessel for conservatives looking for a different direction post Trump,” Colin Reed, Republican strategist and Co-founder of South & Hill Strategies, told The Center Square. “He’s earned his place atop the pack, now he’s got to prove he is up to the task in a growing field of other talented contenders.”
DeSantis built his reputation and conservative following by taking on the “woke establishment” by pairing his tough rhetoric on critical race theory and the LGBT agenda with tangible policy wins. DeSantis took on Disney after the company made clear it wants to advance an LGBT agenda in its programming for kids, and he had some success, working with local leaders to strip the company of special tax and governance protections in his state of Florida. DeSantis still faces legal challenges from the company, but his battle was largely seen as a victory among Republican voters.
“I will not allow a woke corporation based in California to run our state,” DeSantis said last year. “Disney has gotten away with special deals from the State of Florida for way too long.”
After the Black Lives Matter riots and following push to defund police, DeSantis offered bonuses to police officers who would come to his state, drawing attention and praise from conservatives by flying in the face of mainstream media’s narrative around race and policing.
He also took heavy fire from the media for supporting legislation to prevent educators from discussing gender and sexuality topics for young children in the Florida school system. Opponents labeled it the “Don’t Say Gay” bill in the initial controversy, but DeSantis navigated through it, fighting publicly with the media, which was later forced to admit the bill does not include those words.
DeSantis’ decision to stand firm and his Trump-esque battling with reporters bolstered his reputation among conservatives.
Trump, though, has already started attacking DeSantis, calling him “DeSanctimonious” and “unelectable.”
Whether DeSantis will return fire with the same intensity remains to be seen and may be the deciding factor in the primary campaign.
After news broke of the coming announcement, DeSantis’ wife, Casey, posted on Twitter, “Big if true,” apparently a joke giving a nod to the news.
The news comes after U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., announced Monday that he is also running for president. Scott comes in well behind at 1% support in the Morning Consult poll.
The first GOP caucus is in Iowa on Jan. 22, 2024, while the first GOP primary is Jan. 30 of the same year in New Hampshire. However, the first cohort of states holding their presidential primary votes is in March of next year.
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Reposted with permission