The Real Story Of Ron DeSantis’s Reelection Shows Why He Can’t Win The White House

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The data behind Gov. Ron DeSantis’s reelection win doesn’t show a politician with national appeal but a governor who suppressed and discouraged the Democratic vote in Florida.

DeSantis didn’t pile up a large margin of victory because he is a political force in Florida, but because Democrats stayed home:

When the popular narrative of the ’22 campaign was that Dems were about to get creamed, lots of people were suggesting it was because Dems weren’t talking about the economy enough. But the difference between MI/AZ/PA/NV/GA and FL/NY/CA, etc wasn’t prioritizing economic messaging.

— Tom Bonier (@tbonier) January 17, 2023

Turnout among women, younger voters, and voters of color was quite low, in many cases even below 2014 levels. Basically, every Dem group experienced very bad turnout in FL in ’22.

— Tom Bonier (@tbonier) January 17, 2023

DeSantis’s election police, gerrymandering, and voter suppression combined to keep Democrats at home in Florida in 2022. As Democratic turnout was surging around the country, Florida was the exception because Gov. DeSantis shaped the electorate for his maximum benefit.

Ron DeSantis Is 2024 Fool’s Gold

The data suggests that Ron DeSantis constructed a reelection to lend the perception that he is a strong national candidate. As DeSantis was building his 2024 buzz, Democrats were strengthening their control in states like Arizona, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. There will be no national 2024 voter suppression because Democrats control the Senate and White House.

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Some Republicans are so desperate to believe in a Trump alternative that they are willing to line up behind DeSantis, even though nationally, the Florida governor could be an even weaker candidate than a third round of Trump.

In the early going, it looks like much of DeSantis’s support is coming from Republicans who don’t want to lose again with Trump.

The data suggest that unless Republicans reject a third Trump nomination, Ron DeSantis is the latest in a long line of candidates who look better on paper than they will perform in a presidential election.

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