DeSantis 2024 Is a Trap

Stop trying to take Ron DeSantis away from Florida. Just stop it. I understand the rationale, but it’s wrong. It may be quite reasonable to be jealous of Florida for its governor—the only governor in the nation to win my coveted “competent” rating on every major issue. But before we encourage DeSantis and Donald Trump to have a falling out that splits the party (or, rather, before we let the RINO simps do it at the behest of Democrats and lots of Chinese money), let’s review a few salient points. 

First, governors really matter now. The worse Washington gets—and it gets bigger and worse no matter who’s president because the bureaucrats never change—the more important states become. We need to stop thinking of the presidential election as the be-all and end-all of politics. It was never supposed to be that way. States were once so powerful that the federal government had to fight a Civil War to smack them down. States formerly regarded themselves as coequal partners in the nation, not as subservient entities bowing to federal dictates. Whatever else the Civil War achieved, it did immeasurable damage to states’ freedom of action and, by extension, our own.  

States have it in their power to undo this damage by protecting their citizens from federal agents who operate outside the law. (Case in point: ATF agents showing up without warrants at peoples’ homes, attempting to entrap gun owners.) But that would require boldness and courage on a level I don’t expect from any governor. Maybe Kari Lake would have done it. But she had her election stolen. DeSantis is the only sitting governor who could conceivably have the strength of purpose to lead a great reawakening of states’ rights. As I say, I don’t expect it. But he’s the only one who could do it—and he won’t do it if he’s busy trying to get himself elected president. 

And here’s the other thing about DeSantis. We can call it “the main thing”: DeSantis isn’t going to win in 2024. No Republican is, unless voter fraud is addressed first. That means voting in person, on Election Day, and with a valid picture ID, not voting by mail over the course of a month. If we don’t fix that—and we’re not fixing it—it does not matter who the candidate is: Trump, DeSantis, or any other Republican. None of them have a chance in hell. It has nothing to do with who they are. 

I’m going to say this again, simply because far too many “conservative” writers are ignoring it: Trump did not lose in 2020. Republicans did not lose in 2022. If we think we can win with a broader “big-tent” message or with someone who does less mean tweeting, we, in our innocence, are actively helping to destroy this country.  

Suppose we focus on candidates as opposed to the procedure of voting and the integrity of the ballot box. In that case, we are giving every crooked politician and bureaucrat in America the only thing they really want: A plausible excuse for Republicans to keep losing. As long as those of us who vote Republican are willing to continue fooling ourselves, Democrats will be only too happy to let us. 

Trump, DeSantis—if you attack each other, you are damaging yourselves and us. We love you both, so stop it: DeSantis, wait for 2028. This “we need you in 2024” line is a trap. Trump, support DeSantis as governor. And get back on Twitter while you’re at it. Truth Social is not where it’s at. 

If voter fraud is addressed, Trump will win in 2024. And he’ll make an even better president the second time around, because of everything he’s seen and everything we’ve seen since then. DeSantis’ time will come. But right now, we need him in Florida. 

If we don’t address voter fraud, it doesn’t matter who the candidate is because democracy in America won’t exist, and your vote won’t matter—just as it hasn’t mattered for two years. How did we get from a prosperous nation and global peace to where we are now? It wasn’t just COVID. It was you. And it was me. Our government denied us the most important right we have—they stole our votes. And we said, “OK, I guess it must have been something we did.”

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About Dan Gelernter

Dan Gelernter is a columnist for American Greatness living in Florida.

Photo: iStock/Getty Images

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