US election 2024: Where Did Ron DeSantis’s Entire Campaign Go Wrong?

Ron DeSantis exuded a strong sense of confidence in the video that marked the beginning of his campaign in May 2023.

He confidently strode across a stage adorned with flags, basking in the cheers of his supporters. With unwavering determination, he vowed to lead the nation towards a remarkable resurgence.

After seven months, the individual who was often compared to Trump and seen as a fresh start, has decided to end his campaign for the White House. His resignation was accompanied by the acknowledgment that there is no straightforward route to success against the leading contender for the Republican nomination.

So what led to the downfall of the Florida governor, who was once hailed as a political sensation for his opposition to “woke ideology” and impressive performance in office?

There were issues with the candidate himself – a perceived lack of charm and his discomfort with voters – as well as with the campaign he conducted. However, the main factor behind his decline was the individual he was competing against, Donald Trump.

According to Matthew Bartlett, a Republican strategist based in New Hampshire, he was unable to match the level of support enjoyed by his opponent.

“He [Trump] has been their political identity, and perhaps even their personal identity, for a significant amount of time,” Mr. Bartlett remarked.

Reflecting on the campaign, analysts noted that it was an exceedingly challenging election cycle for someone who was relatively new to the national scene. Mr DeSantis faced a formidable opponent in the election, who had the advantage of being an incumbent, having widespread recognition, ample financial resources, and a loyal voter base.

Ron DeSantis exuded a strong sense of confidence in the video that marked the beginning of his campaign in May 2023.

He confidently strode across a stage adorned with flags, basking in the cheers of his supporters. With unwavering determination, he vowed to lead the nation towards a remarkable resurgence.

See also  Biden Claims Red Sea Raids have Continued Despite US Bombings Against the Houthis in Yemen

After seven months, the individual who was often compared to Trump and seen as a fresh start, has decided to end his campaign for the White House. His resignation was accompanied by the acknowledgment that there is no straightforward route to success against the leading contender for the Republican nomination.

So what led to the downfall of the Florida governor, who was once hailed as a political sensation for his opposition to “woke ideology” and impressive performance in office?

There were issues with the candidate himself – a perceived lack of charm and his discomfort with voters – as well as with the campaign he conducted. However, the main factor behind his decline was the individual he was competing against, Donald Trump.

According to Matthew Bartlett, a Republican strategist based in New Hampshire, he was unable to match the level of support enjoyed by his opponent.

“He [Trump] has been their political identity, and perhaps even their personal identity, for a significant amount of time,” Mr. Bartlett remarked.

Reflecting on the campaign, analysts noted that it was an exceedingly challenging election cycle for someone who was relatively new to the national scene. Mr DeSantis faced a formidable opponent in the election, who had the advantage of being an incumbent, having widespread recognition, ample financial resources, and a loyal voter base.

He confidently strode across a stage adorned with flags, basking in the cheers of his supporters. With unwavering determination, he vowed to bring about “the Great American Comeback”.

After seven months, the man who was often compared to Trump and seen as a fresh start has decided to end his campaign for the White House. His departure coincided with the acknowledgment that there is no “clear path to victory” against the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.

According to strategists, the choice to postpone the official launch resulted in the loss of valuable time. What’s even more significant is that it provided Mr. Trump with an opportunity to reshape his public perception as a non-establishment figure, thanks to the extensive media coverage of his various legal troubles.

See also  Trump Faces $370 Million fine in a New York Fraud trial. How Would he repay it?

“The DeSantis campaign got off to a late start and managed to raise a significant amount of money,” commented David Kochel, a seasoned Iowa Republican strategist, in an interview with the BBC. “But at that point, Trump was fiercely attacking him.” I’m not sure if their responses were effective. It seems like they were a bit slow to get involved.

Although Mr DeSantis may have harboured personal desires for the former president’s legal issues to come to light, he refrained from openly criticising Mr. Trump. Instead, he frequently echoed his opponent’s assertions that he was facing unjust treatment.

“Whenever [Mr Trump] faced legal charges, his popularity seemed to increase,” commented Timothy Hagle, a political science professor at the University of Iowa. “And to a certain degree, that’s to be expected, as it’s a natural response to support the leader.”

Initially, DeSantis adopted a cautious approach to avoid causing any displeasure to Mr. Trump. Perhaps he had envisioned gradually attracting Mr. Trump’s supporters as the legal matters continued, frequently suggesting that it was time for the party to progress.

That approach was never successful, though. And Mr. Trump displayed no such self-control.

The former president chose to directly criticise Mr. DeSantis, frequently using nicknames like “Meatball Ron” and “Ron DeSanctimonious”.

Mr. Trump has consistently defeated his Republican opponents, even those with more national experience than Mr. DeSantis, since he entered the political arena in 2015.

Stepping into the presidential race after leading Florida, Mr. DeSantis found himself in the spotlight, where his limitations as a candidate became apparent, particularly when compared to Mr. Trump’s larger-than-life personality.

“When observing DeSantis move about a room, it appears that he believes it is necessary for him to be the centre of attention,” commented Mary Civiello, an executive communications coach and body language expert, during the time of his launch, as reported by the BBC. “It seems to be a rather uncommon occurrence.” It’s clear that he’s feeling a bit uneasy about the situation, which is understandable.

See also  The Turkish Parliament Approves Sweden's Participation in NATO

The discomfort was especially evident in Iowa and New Hampshire, the initial two states to cast their votes, where personal interactions with voters hold significant significance.

“Mr. DeSantis’s personality has been described as robotic and not appealing to voters,” commented Sean Westwood, a government professor at Dartmouth College. “Amidst the Iowa frenzy, he was able to secure the support of [Nikki] Haley, despite his divided attention.”

With a narrow victory over Ms. Haley in Iowa on 15 January, the DeSantis campaign appeared to have gained a bit of breathing room.

Attendees at the caucus night watch party in West Des Moines appeared to be genuinely pleased with the outcome, expressing their support by chanting a name and waving banners. In several interviews, they conveyed optimism about his future prospects.

“He’s the obvious choice instead of President Trump,” remarked college student Jeff Schremer. “Voters can rally behind him as he heads into New Hampshire and South Carolina.”

Ultimately, supporters of Ron DeSantis in both states will not have the opportunity to show their support for him. By suspending his campaign and endorsing Mr Trump before those primaries, the Florida governor is making a strategic move to protect his reputation among Trump’s supporters.

Despite being 45 years old, he understands that this is just a new chapter in his journey.

After that disappointing result in Iowa, one of his supporters, Jack Figge, shared his thoughts on the future in an interview with the BBC. “This is an important year to determine our leader, but my focus lies on 2028,” he expressed. “DeSantis is my preferred candidate.”

About The Author

Share