Why Ron DeSantis Should Run in 2024

Ron DeSantis is a veteran who has spent his time since leaving the military serving his home state of Florida. He is dedicated to his family and is a proven leader in his state—most recently navigating my hometown in Southwest Florida through the disastrous impact of Hurricane Ian. DeSantis has all the hallmarks of a president-in-the-making. Since 2018, DeSantis has led the state through a series of horrific crises. His powerful and disciplined leadership has ensured that the Sunshine State is one of the most prosperous and freest in the Union. 

First, there was DeSantis’ performance during the COVID-19 pandemic. When so many other states succumbed to authoritarianism, DeSantis bucked the trend (even defying then-President Donald Trump) by reopening Florida, saving the economy and, as it turned out, many lives in the process. Because of DeSantis’ visionary and decisive actions as governor during the pandemic, the Sunshine State moved away from being the butt of national jokes and was seen more and more as the promised land. Today in Florida, one sees not only old folks from northern states but young, hip people with license plates from states as far away as California and Oregon. In saving the state’s economy from the ravages of the federal government’s overly cautious pandemic response policies, DeSantis made Florida the best run state with one of the best economies in the nation. 

Second, DeSantis has waged a careful and highly effective campaign against the purveyors of indecency in corporate America. Going against what many believed was sensible advice, the Florida governor launched a cavalcade of attacks against the Disney Corporation, one of Florida’s largest employers and the owner of the Disney World theme parks in Orlando—a major economic engine for the state’s vital tourism industry. Uncowed by the threats from corporate leaders (such as insinuations that the corporations in question would fund DeSantis’ political opponents or would even pull their businesses from Florida), DeSantis understood that he had no choice and hit companies like Disney hard. He did this not because he had a jag against Mickey Mouse. Far from it. DeSantis recognized that the Left had co-opted much of corporate America—including Disney—and were using companies like Disney to push a vile agenda upon our children; attempting to reprogram and indoctrinate the kids so they’d grow up to be good little leftists. He put the country’s future, and our children, ahead of his political ambitions.

Third, when Hurricane Ian made landfall and ravaged my hometown in Southwest Florida, Governor DeSantis immediately flew down with his staff and planted himself in the disaster zone. From a makeshift command center, the governor commanded a strong response to the devastating hurricane. He waged an unremitting war against inefficient political cronyism by publicly attacking my city’s energy company for refusing to ask for help from other power companies. Because of that, our lights were turned on much faster than they would have been. Then, when construction crews insisted that they could not get the bridge into Pine Island restored in any timeframe that was less than a month—leaving hundreds of people abandoned on a destroyed island—DeSantis ordered the bridge be rebuilt and opened within 72 hours. It was, despite the naysaying from overly cautious engineers. In fact, DeSantis’ entire governorship is a masterclass in successful crisis management. 

The fact that the media has tried everything to take him down—from creating fake death tolls allegedly associated with DeSantis’ refusal to enforce onerous lockdowns during the pandemic to blaming him for the hurricane—should indicate how dangerous he is perceived to be by the Left. Like former President Donald Trump, DeSantis represents a dire threat to the system of entrenched special interests in Washington, D.C.. He has proven himself to be a stalwart culture warrior and a brilliant leader. 

DeSantis’ disposition is the pinnacle of professionalism. He will not rage-tweet at his rivals. Instead, he’ll smile at them and implement the strongest possible policies aimed at defeating them. DeSantis will not waste his time talking to media outlets, such as MSNBC or reporters from the New York Times, like Maggie Haberman, who mean to undermine his success and assassinate his character. DeSantis doesn’t care about the opinions from carping ninnies in the anti-Republican press corps. He lets his leadership style—and his record—speak for itself. His discipline denies his Democratic enemies the ammunition they need to defeat him. 

Further, DeSantis has surrounded himself with a dream team of people who are both effective at their jobs as well as loyal. And, unlike with other politicians, loyalty in the DeSantis team cuts both ways. Yes, his people are loyal to him; but, more importantly, the governor is loyal to them. Earlier this year, when the governor’s press secretary became the target of vicious media smears, rather than take the easy road and distance himself from her, Governor DeSantis publicly stood by his press secretary; he made clear that she was on his team for the long-haul. DeSantis even promoted her. The only ones being kicked to the curb were the lying press who will do anything to besmirch DeSantis’ good name (because they fear him in ways they could never fear another Republican leader).

Another plus is that DeSantis is a Gen-X’er. He is not weighed down by the chic revolutionary ethos that has destroyed the Baby Boom generation and he is not bogged down by the identity politics that currently plagues my generation. The country is in its worst crisis in a generation. We need disciplined, steady, and powerful leadership—as well as a young and dynamic leader—to get us through this period. Ron DeSantis is the only politician on the scene right now who can possibly do that. 

The success of Florida can and should be scaled up to the entire nation. Even if Governor DeSantis cannot ultimately win the Republican nomination in 2024, he should still run and not allow himself to be bullied by representatives of the GOP who may prefer other, older politicians to get the nomination. They’ve had their turn. More than that, the entire point of a primary is to determine who is the best candidate to lead us in what will surely be a contentious general election in 2024. DeSantis must run, no matter the odds. 

If he doesn’t win, at least he will have elevated his stature and set himself up for another run down the road. Destiny is calling. Trying to manage the timeline for a “safer” moment in our country’s history to run (because powerful interests are opposed to him running now) is a surefire way to never be president. When destiny demands an answer, you don’t get to put it on hold. You either act now or never. For DeSantis, 2024 is the only time to run. All other considerations are irrelevant. 

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About Brandon J. Weichert

A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.href="https://twitter.com/WeTheBrandon">@WeTheBrandon.

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