After teasing it heavily in the run-up, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has made it official (beyond his earlier FEC filing) that he is running for President of the United States in 2024.
DeSantis, who recently won re-election in Florida with an overwhelming majority, recently wrapped up a very successful legislative session and has been touring several early primary states, like Iowa. But the campaign team has been relatively silent in the run-up to Wednesday’s filing and announcement, with several media outlets attacking DeSantis for not granting them access to the inner workings of his team.
While there were technical difficulties – as hundreds of thousands of people flooded the Twitter Spaces interview between Elon Musk and DeSantis – he did make it official.
The DeSantis campaign also dropped a campaign announcement at the same time.
“Our border is a disaster. Crime infests our cities. The federal government makes it harder for families to make ends meet. And the president flounders,” he says in the video. “But decline is a choice. Success is attainable. And freedom is worth fighting for.”
DeSantis will be making his pitch to the voters as someone who is more on their level, and facing down the issues that blue-collar parents and families face every day.
Husband and father of three, DeSantis has certainly cast himself as a pro-family fighter. He has championed pro-life legislation and has even been attacked by other Republicans, like former president and current primary opponent Donald Trump, as too pro-life. He also signed into law sales tax exemptions for certain family necessities like diapers and cribs.
Based on his speeches and press conferences, it seems DeSantis will be focusing on turning America around. He has frequently championed truth, which he has claimed is under assault – and has on multiple occasions checked reporters who attempt “gotcha” questions based on political talking points rather than facts. He has proven a worthy adversary of contentious media, and it’s a rivalry that is bound to get more intense.
While being a Governor and being a President are vastly different jobs, DeSantis will likely make a play for the presidency not just on social and cultural issues but his record as a governor and what has made his state a beacon of refuge for citizens from all over the country. It’s one of the fastest-growing states in the nation because it’s become extremely attractive to voters.
What Is His Strategy?
You’re likely going to see DeSantis go on the attack against his opponents in three different areas:
- Winning: DeSantis has mentioned several times that he wants to bring back a culture of winning to a party that has struggled to do so in the last couple of election cycles. While Republicans underperformed in 2022, he soared to re-election in a state that was considered purple at best.
- Keeping Promises: He has touted his ability to keep promises to voters and the results can be seen in his popularity at home and his re-election victory. It appears that his voters trust his agenda and that he’ll stick with it.
- Stopping the Decline: Turning the country around means not making the mistakes of the past, and it’s very likely that DeSantis will refer to those mistakes – like COVID shutdowns and the rise of Anthony Fauci – in an effort to show he’s even willing to fight members of his own party if it means doing the right thing for the people he represents.
The Race Is On
DeSantis is now the fifth big name in the race, running against former president Donald Trump, former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley, Sen. Tim Scott, and tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy for the Republican nomination. There are others looking to jump in – like Mike Pence, Chris Christie, Glenn Youngkin, and others – but DeSantis jumping into the race can change the lay of the land.