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Yes, DeSantis is Pandering
DeSantis is saying things that aren't true, that he knows aren't true, in order to chase after a small sub-section of voters that are already in the bag for Trump.
People keep telling me, "DeSantis isn't pandering, he's just being a realist."
Look, saying things that aren't true to please a small constituency that's already in the tank for Trump is pandering. Ukraine isn't a border crisis. Our support for Ukraine isn't a blank check. We don't have to choose between supporting a key ally against a destabilizing geopolitical foe and securing the southern border. These things aren't true. They're propaganda bullet points. And DeSantis, the former JAG officer, KNOWS they're not true. He's only saying these things because he's made a tactical, cynical decision to go after MAGA votes instead of assembling a broad non-Trump coalition.
This isn't a vague concern. This isn't just a pet issue of mine that I need to "get over." This is emblematic not only of disconcerting cynicism in DeSantis' political decision-making but a broader problem in the DeSantis campaign's strategy. This issue is demonstrative of why DeSantis has fizzled and why Haley is picking up steam.
And I'm not convinced DeSantis has any more time to turn things around, nor am I convinced, judging by the angry replies I keep getting from DeSantis fans, that Team DeSantis even wants to confront where the campaign went wrong.
If DeSantis corrects course and somehow manages to salvage his campaign, I'll be more than happy to jump back on board. But that's not going to happen if DeSantis and his fans are just going to blame their problems on people like me who "jumped off the train over cursory issues" instead of confronting the fact that those cursory issues suggest the very weaknesses that have undermined the DeSantis endeavor up to this point.
The Daily Saucer is our place for freelance contributors and editorial staff to offer short takes on the news cycle, quick observations on the issues, and brief thoughts on broader topics. The views offered in this space reflect only the personal views of the authors.