In a move that sets the stage for an intense in-party contest for the 2024 presidential nomination, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has officially initiated his presidential campaign.
The news comes amid increasingly hostile engagements with former President Donald Trump, despite DeSantis’s rising profile within the Republican Party. With Trump’s popularity outstripping his own, DeSantis finds himself challenging.
DeSantis. 44, took the preliminary steps toward his presidential bid by submitting the required documents to the Federal Election Commission just before his formal announcement. This announcement was strategically scheduled during a live stream with tech billionaire Elon Musk on Twitter’s audioTwitters. Accompanying his campaign launch was a video from the DeSantis-supporting group, Never Back Down, featuring his triumph speech from the November 2022 election, which declared, “Florida is the “e woke goes to die.”
Read: Technical Glitches Mar Twitter During High-Profile Chat between Elon Musk and Ron DeSantis
DeSantis’s ca”pDeSantis’soff precedes a three-day Miami retreat for his top contributors and comes before his planned visits to several early-voting states to solidify his campaign. Despite being seen as a strong contender against Trump within the Republican faction, DeSantis lacks the national visibility the ex-president enjoys. Engaging with Musk’s extensivMusk’sence during his campaign launch could give DeSantis an edge by potentially capturing the attention of Trump’s followers.
In his role as Florida’s goverFlorida’sntis has positioned himself as a stalwart conservative, evident in the numerous state laws he has enacted. These laws target “woke to indoctrinate ” in schools and public institutions, limit discussions on gender identity and sexual orientation, cut funding for diversity initiatives in universities, and impose strict abortion regulations.
However, DeSantis faces the challenge of boosting his declining approval ratings due to several policy missteps. In addition, overcoming the significant poll gap between him and Trump, who maintains a substantial lead despite his legal issues, will be a formidable challenge.
Politically, both the DeSantis and Trump camps are angling for endorsements from state lawmakers, with most of Florida’s congrFlorida’sdelegation appearing to favor Trump. Elon Musk, a known DeSantis fan, presided over the campaign launch event but emphasized that this does not imply Twitter’s endorTwitter DeSantis’s nomination.
Reacting to DeSantis’s campDeSantis’sncement, Trump responded subtly, showcasing favorable polls on his social media platform, Truth Social. In addition, a Trump aide noted that the announcement via Twitter was apt for DeSantis, as it allowed him to evade direct questions from the press.