DeSantis moves: NEW YORK (AP) – Republican presidential hopefuls usually fight for the top speaking spots during the Conservative Political Action Conference. However, as conservatives gather in suburbs of Washington this week Florida Governor. Ron DeSantis will be courting donors that are more than a thousand miles from home from Texas in Texas and California.
The apparent CPAC rejection is not a new thing for the man who has been spotted in the first period of the 2020 presidential campaign as a top contender to win the GOP nomination, even at the traditional political conventions.
DeSantis is often heard in the fight for conservative culture on cable, but DeSantis is not often seen in gatherings of his fellow Republican governors or party officials and party leaders, who often be vocal about his individual method of conducting himself. The only presidential candidate of the top tier to approach potential voters from Iowa, New Hampshire or South Carolina, the states hosting the GOP’s first presidential primary elections. In addition, he’s often opposed to the press not even letting local media about last week’s rare three-state trip with law enforcement officials.
In fact, as DeSantis makes his way towards the possibility of a White House run, it is becoming more apparent his 44 years old Republican governor will pursue his presidential ambitions according to his own style according to his own schedule, and without the help of allies in the national GOP leadership or relations with the media.
“DeSantis has, through his style and actions he’s taken in his capacity as governor, demonstrated his willingness to challenge the traditional power structures and, more importantly, the establishment.” declared David McIntosh, president of the Club for Growth, an influential conservative group that is based in Washington. McIntosh described DeSantis’s style in terms of “refreshing” and said the GOP is now ready to change its approach from the former president Donald Trump.
As of now, DeSantis has emerged as probably the most powerful challenge to Trump’s efforts to secure his GOP election for the third consecutive time. It is believed that the Club for Growth will host DeSantis along with a half-dozen other presidential hopefuls at a closed-door retreat in Florida next weekend. The event will be attended by prominent donors. Trump is not attending.
In the meantime, DeSantis has began to build his political coalition according to his own terms as he launches a new novel, “The Courage to be Free,” which comes out on Tuesday.
He sat in a closed-door south Florida luxurious hotel to attend a “Freedom Blueprint” retreat with more than 100 donors politicians, influential conservatives, and elected officials. The guests included the former Trump Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton and Texas-based donor Roy Bailey, a former member of the president’s financial committee in the national capital.
Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt and Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee were also in the audience, along with a Wisconsin senator. Ron Johnson, Utah Sen. Mike Lee, Texas Rep. Chip Roy, and Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie.
Fox News host Laura Ingraham hosted a fireside conversation with DeSantis on Sunday before the two joined an “fighting back against awake” conversation with Chaya Raichik, the person who manages”Libs of TkTok. “Libs of TikTok” social media account.
The details of the gathering were made public by the participants who asked to remain anonymous to discuss the private gathering.
Trump was mostly ignored during the weekend gathering, however, the conservative anchor Ann Coulter seized on his inability to construct an entire wall along the U.S.-Mexico border during a panel discussion with DeSantis about border security According to one participant present. Coulter accused the former president of not planning to build the wall initially.
In the days ahead and in the weeks to come, DeSantis will use the publication of his book to make himself known to voters outside of Florida after establishing his power in the state this fall when he won his reelection with greater than 19 percentage point.
He is likely to appear in important states that are on the calendar of the primary, such as Iowa as well as New Hampshire in the coming weeks, along with general election battlegrounds such as Georgia as well as Pennsylvania. In the last week, he made unexpected visits to New York City, Philadelphia and Chicago to address court police officials, but the event was private and he didn’t inform the local media.
The Florida governor has already been scheduled to be the keynote speaker at two Republican events at Texas this Saturday. On the next day, he’ll be speaking at a dinner for $500 per head in support of members of the GOP from Orange County, California. He’ll be an opening speaker at the Alabama GOP next week.
Although he has started to build his brand DeSantis has been able to do less than the class of 2024’s early years to engage with voters of the primary and potential allies in the key states.
He’s long stayed away from gatherings with Republican governors and top GOP officials who privately denounce his style as arrogant. He has never been to Iowa.
A former New Hampshire GOP chair Jennifer Horn said the fact that Republican primary voters typically support opposition-oriented candidates “who are prepared to forge their own route or follow their own route.”
“But in the event that you’re running to be president and in this particular environment I believe he needs to be cautious not to become a victim of his own arrogance” she added. “He is convinced that he is more knowledgeable than anyone else about all things, which is never good for anyone.”
In the meantime, DeSantis’ team feels not a need to be in the 2024 race that already has 3 Republican candidates. Trump declared the race three months ago.
DeSantis has also shown little desire to respond at Trump’s more personal attacks including recent social media posts that suggest that DeSantis was in a compromising mood with minors during a brief stint as a teacher at high school in his early 20s.
Trump uses the Florida governor as “Meatball Ron DeSanctimonious” and “Meatball Ron.”
In contrast, DeSantis in his new book praises Trump as a factor in helping him to win the Florida governorship in 2018.
“I was aware that a Trump endorsement would give me the opportunity to be seen by GOP primary voters throughout Florida. State of Florida, and I was sure that the majority of voters would view me as an ideal candidate once they had a look at my past,” DeSantis writes, according to an earlier copy that was obtained by the Guardian.
Trump’s growing attention to DeSantis could accidentally aid his Florida governor by positioning DeSantis as the most powerful Republican Trump alternative According to Sam Nunberg, a former Trump adviser who became a critic.
“Look, Donald is worried and, if I were working on his behalf, I’d suggest it’s time to update his game plan,” Nunberg said.
Meanwhile, DeSantis is focused on broadening his conservative agenda during the upcoming state legislative session that runs from March to May.
He has already made a push to remove diversity programs, equity and inclusion in Florida’s public universities as well as colleges. His other top priorities are the right to allow gun owners to carry guns on public streets without having a permit; weakening the laws to protect journalists from lawsuits; and stepping up efforts to crack into illegal immigrants, such as the plan to cut off tuition in the state for students who are living in immigration illegally.
In an apparent reference to his political savvy DeSantis is currently under fire from a growing set of Republican opponents.
New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu publicly condemned DeSantis’s decision to make use of the power of the government to penalize private businesses such as Disney which rebuff his policy goals. North Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem’s staff has criticized DeSantis’ abortion record as not being conservative enough.
DeSantis was not doing himself any favors in his own Republican National Committee last month in his public support for RNC chair Ronna McDaniel’s opponent during her fierce reelection campaign. McDaniel was able to easily win reelection to her position.
“We are moving ahead. This is what I’m working on,”” McDaniel said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” when she was asked about her cooperation with the senator. “The only thing Republicans could do to make sure we won’t be fighting with against each other constantly.”