Ron DeSantis is the most transactional politician in recent Florida history. Yet the dream of the donor class is running afoul of that very same donor class as he gets ready to launch his Presidential campaign.
- New York Times: Major G.O.P. Donor’s Commitment to DeSantis Is Murkier Than Thought
- Forbes: Billionaire GOP Donor Says He Won’t Support DeSantis Because Florida Gov. ‘Doesn’t Even Return Phone Calls’
Friday night in an interview I stumbled upon, CNN’s Erin Burnett interviewed John Catsimatidis, a billionaire GOP donor who has been trying to reach DeSantis but with no success. According to Catsimatidis he is one of “several” prominent GOP backers that has not gotten a call back from the Florida Governor.
So what is the issue here?
- DeSantis I am told is very good at demanding things or promising “stuff” for donors using his power as Governor, but isn’t so good asking for money especially from those who might simply want access or to be on the winning team.
- Similar to the Governor’s continuing inability to have prominent Florida GOPers endorse him, he’s not nearly as likable one-on-one as Donald Trump. What’s worse is Trump, like a classic businessman or politician is good at making phone calls, reminding elected officials of his importance, checking in, etc. DeSantis tends to only reach, I have been told out when he needs something or is going to bully someone to fall in line. Trump of course does his fair share of bulling but it’s not the only time he engages with the individual he needs.
- DeSantis just isn’t good at retail politics at all – he seems a cold fish, or maybe a better expression is a fish out of water. His awkwardness isn’t a vice, but plainly donors don’t like it.
- Oh and their is also his war on Disney which very clearly goes against the free market principles of most big GOP donors. The donors that are interested in social issues and fighting woke education are likely to still back him, but the GOP donor class is dominated by capitalists who thought DeSantis wasn’t a government-centric populist and protectionist like Trump, but now realize if anything, he is even worse.