“To sum up: DeSantis is not a fun and convivial dude. He prefers to keep his earbuds in. His ‘Step away from the vehicle’ vibes are strong.” – former NY Times “reporter” Mark Leibovich, writing in The Atlantic.
As Professor Jacobson recently iterated, the mainstream media “will always tell you who they fear.” That has absolutely been the case with their frequent attacks on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, for whom the prevailing sentiment in the press, on the left, and among the NeverTrump “right” in hit piece after hit piece is that he is “worse” than former President Donald Trump.
Though the attacks have been plentiful—including one rather bizarre one about DeSantis getting married at Disney in 2009, they’ve definitely stepped it up since his resounding victory in last month’s gubernatorial election, which saw Florida go redder and DeSantis pummel his “Democratic” opponent Charlie Crist by nearly 20 points.
Case in point, a new write-up from the Atlantic in which staff writer Mark Leibovich, who used to be a “reporter” for the New York Times, let us know that perhaps DeSantis’ biggest problems are that he’s not “fun” enough nor does he mingle much in establishment Republican circles:
People who know him better and have watched him longer are skeptical of his ability to take on the former president. DeSantis, they say, is no thoroughbred political athlete. He can be awkward and plodding. And Trump tends to eviscerate guys like that.
“He was standoffish in general,” the Virginia Republican Barbara Comstock, a former House colleague of DeSantis’s, told me.
“A strange no-eye-contact oddball,” Rick Wilson, a Republican media consultant, wrote on Resolute Square.
“I’d rather have teeth pulled without anesthetic than be on a boat with Ron DeSantis,” says Mac Stipanovich, a Tallahassee lobbyist who set sail from the GOP over his revulsion for Trump and his knockoffs. To sum up: DeSantis is not a fun and convivial dude. He prefers to keep his earbuds in. His “Step away from the vehicle” vibes are strong.
“I think he is going to run into some challenges,” Carlos Curbelo, a former Republican congressman from Florida who served with DeSantis in the House, told me. “It’s that question that often comes up in politics—the question of ‘Would you want to have a beer with him?’’’
“I don’t think Ron hangs out with anybody, from what I can tell,” former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said during an appearance on the Ruthless podcast. Christie, who encountered DeSantis at Republican Governors Association meetings, said his Florida counterpart tended to remain cocooned inside his entourage. “I don’t see him hanging with the other governors,” Christie said.
Now, if it’s baked into your DNA to view Republicans as the greatest threat to the United States since, well, forever, then you’re exactly the kind of person who would favorably view a laughable hit piece that quotes mostly NeverTrumpers and other has-been Republican politicos as being critical of DeSantis.
Politico‘s Alex Thompson referred to the article as “great,” as did Leibovich’s colleague Elaine Godfrey. Florida Politics publisher Peter Schorsch described to the story as “well-done.” Perpetual Angry Man Joe Walsh, who once infamously declared in 2020 that he would vote for a socialist like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) over Trump, said it was a “really good piece.”
But if you’re like the rest of us, your B.S. detector is strong, and you recognize the pathetic, desperate nature of this attack for what it is:
The worst political scandal since Marco Rubio sipped water live on television. https://t.co/GeVJfYx4F8
— Jason Bedrick (@JasonBedrick) December 1, 2022
You know that Atlantic piece on DeSantis is going to be garbage because it features the words “Rick Wilson, a Republican media consultant.”
— David Harsanyi (@davidharsanyi) November 30, 2022
Ron doesn’t feel the need to fill silences?
Once known as self-confidence, apparently now a quality so rare it’s deemed “awkward”
The (cess)pool this pulls from is embarrassingly shallow – lobbyist, a Lincoln Project founder, & “whichever way the wind blows” Christie? *Cringe*
— Catahoula Mama 😎 (@catahoula_mama) December 1, 2022
Besides, is it really true that DeSantis doesn’t like to have fun?
DeSantis and Floridians having no fun with each other. Jacksonville, 2021. pic.twitter.com/RGgRIvaFsN
— Jim Stinson (@jimstinson) December 1, 2022
Like all the attempted hit pieces on DeSantis so far, this one is poorly written, very poorly sourced (Rick Wilson & some lobbyist who hates Republicans have opinions, you guys) & just sad. 1st time I met my gov we hung out late drinking whiskey & smoking cigars. Maybe it's you. https://t.co/gFxMxzgFDT
— Karol Markowicz (@karol) December 1, 2022
Also, are we really supposed to think that DeSantis not seeking the approval of cocktail circuit dwellers and the “Have a Beer With Me”-standard types is a actually bad thing?
2 years of this guy being a national star and the best hits they can muster are he doesn’t listen to political consultants and he’s not the life of the party. https://t.co/IgmFmn4l8o
— Matt Rinaldi (@MattRinaldiTX) December 1, 2022
If you’re telling me that DeSantis wore headphones to avoid talking to establishment Republican colleagues in Washington, he might just win my vote. https://t.co/hAF4o9T02x
— Zachary Miller (@_ZacharyMiller) December 1, 2022
30+ years of electing people we “want to have a beer with” just aren’t working out, and Rick Wilson has bad things to say about him…you guys make a pretty good case for supporting the guy! Well done!
— B.T. Mattison (@BT_Mattison) December 1, 2022
— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —DONATE
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