The Morning Briefing: DeSantis Should Sue His Campaign Consultants for Malpractice

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Happy Tuesday, dear Kruiser Morning Briefing friends. Yezellreth surprised everyone at the networking luncheon with the amazing success of his portable commode warmers. 

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On Monday’s episode of our VIP Gold live chat “Five O’Clock Somewhere,” Stephen Green and I were discussing a big similarity between the 2016 and 2024 GOP primary seasons. 

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Back in ’16, most of the people in our circles (conservative media and activism) were big Ted Cruz supporters. In that very large field, Cruz seemed like the obvious choice to those of us who traffic in political news. All seemed right with the world when the primaries kicked off with Cruz winning in Iowa. We all shrugged off the fact that a victory in Iowa isn’t much of a historical predictor of success throughout the primaries.

 Donald Trump was, obviously, the X factor that year, and we were all surprised when he began racking up victories and delegates. 

In this cycle, we Extremely Online conservatives have mostly been DeSantis fans. My good friend Kevin Downey Jr. is the most notable outlier, having been a Trump devotee since that famous escalator trip in 2015. 

There were no surprises this time. DeSantis supporters have been lamenting his inability to get any traction in race practically since the launch of his campaign. Unable to ride a wave of delusion like Nikki Haley, DeSantis wisely decided not to prolong the agony on Monday. Here’s an excerpt from his statement, which Matt wrote about

“Now following our second-place finish in Iowa, we have prayed and deliberated on the way forward,” he continued. “If there was anything I could do to produce a favorable outcome — more campaign stops, more interviews — I would do it. But I can’t ask our supporters to volunteer their time and donate their resources if we don’t have a clear path to victory. Accordingly, I am today suspending my campaign.”

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I know something that he could have done from the beginning but, hey, he didn’t ask me. 

It’s no secret that I am not a fan of the grifters in the political consultant class. Consultants don’t even have to be good at their jobs — the political landscape is littered with scores of them who have track records that should make them want to bury their heads in the sand. 

I don’t know who was advising DeSantis, but they should be made to wander in the political desert for a few decades. 

Ron DeSantis became Public Enemy Number One-and-a-Half (after Trump, of course) largely because of the brilliant way he handled Florida’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He essentially gave the finger to Anthony Fauci, Rochelle Walensky, and every other egomaniacal bureaucratic tyrant. 

DeSantis’s handling of COVID was his — I have to say it — trump card in his effort to catch Trump. It was Trump who weaponized Fauci, no matter how much he and the MAGA faithful deny it. That alone should have been mentioned by the DeSantis campaign as often as possible. 

What DeSantis needed to do was ignore Haley, Vivek, and the rest of the Island of Misfit Republicans and hammer Trump on COVID. I’m pretty sure that’s what Trump and his people thought that DeSantis would do, because Trump and his online army were rewriting the history of his and DeSantis’s COVID responses from the moment the governor got into the race. 

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There were some other things hindering DeSantis. Many have made the point that this simply wasn’t his time, which I’m rather agnostic about. Then there’s the fact that DeSantis’s personality isn’t getting its minimum daily requirement of effervescence. 

I am not at all positing that DeSantis would have fared better had he gone with a COVID-centric strategy; I’m saying that it was his only real shot. To the chagrin of Dems and squish Republicans everywhere, Joe and Edna GOP in Normal America love Donald Trump. Even if DeSantis had gone all-in on the COVID response strategy, it may have only gotten him to Super Tuesday. 

In his statement, DeSantis said that he and his wife Casey “left it all out on the field” in this campaign. In reality, it feels like he left the best part of the playbook closed for too long. 

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