BBC: Ron DeSantis still hasn't announced his presidential candidacy, what is he waiting for?

BBC: Ron DeSantis still hasn't announced his presidential candidacy, what is he waiting for?

BBC: Ron DeSantis still hasn't announced his presidential candidacy, what are you waiting for?

Illustrative photo – Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis defended his mandate in the election, November 8, 2022.

Washington – Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is not yet running in the Republican primary for the US presidential election in 2024. “Or is he already kind of running?” asks Anthony Zurcher in an analysis for the BBC website. DeSantis, the conservative firebrand who is second only to Donald Trump in favor of Republican public opinion, has not yet announced his candidacy, but he is taking all the steps typical of a politician at the beginning of a presidential race.

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DeSantis has made several public appearances outside of his home state recently and has other events planned in Alabama, California and Texas. His political team is hiring people with national campaigning experience, and his ambitious memoir, The Courage to Be Free, was released on Tuesday, and he has several media appearances to promote it.

< p>So what is he waiting for? According to Florida conservative columnist Myra Adams, the answer is easy: DeSantis is fully prepared to announce his candidacy — either win and get the nomination, or lose and be in good position for another try in four years. But since he was just inaugurated as Florida's governor for the second time, he has to wait until the Florida legislature's term ends, which won't be until May.

“It wouldn't be a good idea to announce now. He was just reelected and has months to breathe makes sense. In the meantime, he can push Florida lawmakers to present his leadership skills to a national audience,” Adams says.

On Monday, the governor signed legislation that limits the ability of Disney, which operates a theme park in central Florida, to control local government and infrastructure around its property. DeSantis has long-running feuds with the California entertainment giant over, among other things, his conservative education policies; last year, the governor signed a law dubbed “don't say gay” that limits the ways public school teachers can discuss LGBT issues. His clash with Disney made national headlines.

DeSantis also has an important speech coming up next week on Tuesday, in which he will likely try to showcase his vision of conservative governance and reach out to Republicans outside of Florida. On a tour to promote his memoirs, he gave an interview to Fox News on Sunday in which he sharply criticized the political influence of big corporations, accused “federal bureaucrats” of undermining conservative politics and defended his actions, which some called too aggressive.

“When you're not on offense, you're basically just a duck waiting to be shot. You just let other people get as close to you as possible and hit you below the belt,” said DeSantis, who also describes himself as a “Midwestern heartthrob “, an American region that is a key battleground for the presidential election. Overall, his book is the cautious work of a politician with national ambitions who doesn't want his written word to one day backfire, Zurcher says.

In excerpts from the book published by the New York Post, DeSantis talks about his accomplishments in Florida and speaks warmly of his opponent, Trump, and the “good relationship” they had when DeSantis represented Florida in Congress. “I knew that Trump's endorsement would give me publicity among Republicans across Florida, and I was sure that many of them would consider me a good candidate when they learned more about me,” he said.

If DeSantis and the former president once had a good relationship, it later became somewhat strained, to put it very mildly. Trump has already announced his presidential candidacy and sent a series of attacks in DeSantis' direction: He called him a “globalist” who “supports an endless war in Ukraine”, and also criticized DeSantis' approach to the covid-19 pandemic, namely that he lifted pandemic measures too soon.

For now, DeSantis has decided not to return fire. He will also not attend the conservative CPAC conference outside Washington this week, where he would have had the opportunity to stand on the same stage with Trump. According to Adams, it's a wise move: “He's going to cause more of a stir by not being there. CPAC is a 'Trump' gathering. Why would DeSantis want to be in that situation? He'd rather create a clear dividing line – the Trump camp and the DeSantis camp”.

But the fight is coming, Adams adds, because both Trump and DeSantis are expected to win the Republican primary. So far, public opinion gives both hope for success and reasons for nervousness. In multi-candidate polls, Trump usually leads, with a recent Fox News poll, for example, giving Trump 43 percent of the vote, DeSantis 28 percent, and the others in the single digits. But a recent Club For Growth poll published in February showed that a De Santis vs. Trump matchup would end with DeSantis winning 49 percent to 40 percent of the vote.

“Neither of them believe they can lose,” Adams says. . “They both think the other is going to be easy to beat. They know their weak spots. They know how to attack them. Neither of them is going to back down. It's going to be brutal.”