Why some Republicans think Ron DeSantis is the future of the party

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As It Happens6:39Why some Republicans think Ron DeSantis is the future of the party

Ron DeSantis’ landslide victory in Florida has many conservative media retailers and political pundits crowning him the future chief of the U.S. Republican Party.

The Florida governor gained his second consecutive victory in the state in Tuesday’s U.S. midterm elections, with a 20-point lead over Democratic rival Charlie Crist. 

It’s a powerful feat in what was once thought-about a swing state, says Scott Jennings, a CNN political commentator and a Republican who has labored for former U.S. president George W. Bush and Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Jennings spoke to As It Happens host Nil Köksal about how DeSantis compares to former U.S. president Donald Trump, and what his success means for the Republicans nationally. Here is half of their dialog. 

As you properly know, some had been predicting a wipeout for the Democrats, a Republican pink wave. In the finish, it did not come to be. So, if not a pink wave, what phrases would you employ to explain what occurred final evening?

It’s not an “all is misplaced” moment, however … as I have a look at the outcomes, I’m simply all these impartial voters who had been bitter on [Democratic U.S. President Joe] Biden, bitter on the financial system, bitter on the route of the nation, actually not sure about issues. And but they caught with the Democrats as a result of, I think, the Republican model being related to Donald Trump is nonetheless an excessive amount of for them.

This is the lesson I think that Republicans have to be taught. We have a Trump drawback. 

Is Ron DeSantis the answer to that drawback, in your view?

I do not think Donald Trump has ever been weaker than he is proper now amongst Republicans who wholeheartedly supported him and voted for him twice. I think DeSantis has by no means been hotter.

And I think in politics, when somebody is weak, you must transfer on it, as a result of they’ll recuperate. We’ve seen this with Trump. He was weak on January sixth. Everybody knew he had completed improper. He’d by no means been weaker in his life as he was at that moment. And but the party let him off the hook.

And now the distinction is there’s somebody to fill the breach. There’s somebody to step ahead in a management position and transfer the party past Trump. 

Before, the drawback was it wasn’t clear who was going to, you realize, push Trump or lead the party in a brand new route. So he simply recovered and stuffed the void himself.

Now, Ron DeSantis has by no means been in a greater place to inform the Republican Party that the American individuals have spoken. They inform us we have now a branding drawback. The model is Trump. And I’m right here to let you know, a brand new advertising and marketing division shall be put in in brief order. Stay tuned.

If I had been him, that is the message I might ship. And he is received the credibility and the outcomes to again it up.

Scott Jennings, a CNN political commentator and Republican marketing campaign adviser, says DeSantis is the future of the party. (Rogelio V. Solis/The Associated Press)

I’m questioning if you happen to think the party will truly hear. There was an attention-grabbing piece from David Frum at present in the Atlantic, and he writes in it, “For seven years, Donald Trump’s superpower has been the abjectness of his fellow Republicans.” So do you think Republicans are literally going to be prepared to leap ship now?

Like I stated, I think one of the causes he at all times was in a position to recuperate in his weakest moments is as a result of it was by no means clear who else there was to guide the party. Now there is another, and it is another named Ron DeSantis, who has a nationwide profile, who’s constructed up loads of goodwill with Republican donors and grassroots, alike. 

Beyond all that, Florida has develop into the model of governance that Republicans need to apply to the relaxation of the nation. It was once Texas, to some diploma. We at all times checked out Texas as, you realize, form of the Republican capital of America. Now it is Florida … and that is largely as a result of of what DeSantis has completed.

You have a look at his outcomes final evening amongst Hispanics. You have a look at what he did in Miami-Dade. You have a look at the white-collar suburban areas of Florida. You have a look at the rural panhandle. The DeSantis coalition is so broad.

That’s what Trump has by no means been in a position to do. He’s at all times been so restricted as a result of there are simply sure components of the Republican coalition he cannot attain. But DeSantis apparently can attain and mix all of them.

If you need to win a nationwide election, that is what you must do. We have not gained the well-liked vote since 2004, when George W. Bush put the same form of coalition collectively. It looks like DeSantis has the instincts to do it, and Trump appears to be too restricted to tug it off.

A a man with short brown hair and a suit holds a toddler as he smiled and waves on stage in front of an American flag. Behind him, a woman with long brown hair and a shimmering yellow gown smiles. Two children, a boy and a girl, stand on either side of her, as she touches their shoulders.
DeSantis, his spouse Casey DeSantis, and their kids stroll on stage to rejoice victory. (Octavio Jones/Getty Images)

He’s additionally the particular person, the chief, who despatched asylum seekers to Martha’s Vineyard underneath what seems to be false pretences. So how did that play into — or not play into — what we noticed final evening?

You inform me. He gained by 20 factors. And he gained an amazing quantity of Hispanics. You have a look at the shift in Hispanic voters up and down the board from 2020 to 2022. I imply, it is seismic in what it means for Florida politics and what it might imply for the nationwide Republican Party.

So I think DeSantis has, proper now, the finest instincts in the Republican Party about what to do and when to do it. Again, he isn’t a flashy showman. You know, he isn’t a TV character. He’s not a pundit. But he is a frontrunner. And his instincts are simply confirmed once more, repeatedly, to be actually good.

Beyond Florida, what do you think Ron DeSantis is providing voters throughout the nation? And what would the Republican Party appear to be with him as chief?

I think what he is providing them is a brand new technology of management. I imply, I think the one factor Americans usually don’t desire is a rematch between Biden and Trump. In truth, I do not know a single particular person that wishes a rematch, aside from Trump and Biden.

So the very first thing he affords to the Republican Party is a brand new technology of management. He does give you a large number of the aggressiveness, the combat, that you simply get out of Trump. But he additionally offers you self-control, and he offers you competence in governance. And he takes loads of the drama out of politics.

Another factor that DeSantis provided the Republican Party is he travelled throughout the nation campaigning for individuals and by no means actually talked about himself or talked about his future ambitions. He simply campaigned for whoever was on the stage with him.

Trump, on the different hand, made the marketing campaign stops he made about himself — you realize, attacking DeSantis at one, teasing a presidential marketing campaign at one other, exhibiting up in Pennsylvania, the place his presence was clearly not useful. 

Trump is principally a egocentric political entity. But DeSantis proved to be a staff participant.

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