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Should Ron DeSantis run for president?
The case for maximizing his tenure in Tallahassee.
Can Governor Ron DeSantis do for the nation what he has done for Florida?
I’m not so sure. I’m an optimist, but also a realist, and the institutional reform ship has sailed far far away from Washington, D.C.
As readers of The Dossier are well aware of by now, I very much admire how Gov DeSantis has governed Florida, and I’m also a big fan of the governor as an individual. I have no doubt that Ron DeSantis would make an outstanding president of the United States and fulfill the sacred duty of commander in chief to the best of his ability.
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However, I’m not entirely convinced that it would be beneficial in the long run for Ron DeSantis to become president right now.
Perhaps it’s for the best that DeSantis continues to keep his foot on the accelerator in Florida, where he is helping to bring about real, lasting human flourishing to The Sunshine State, and positive change that will see a multi-generational benefit.
It’s worth recalling that Florida is very much a purple state electorally. The 2018 Florida gubernatorial election was decided by 30,000 votes. Had the notoriously corrupt Andrew Gillum won Florida, there’s a pretty high likelihood that we’d still all have masks forcibly strapped to our faces. For the sake of Floridians, I’m happy to keep Gov. DeSantis in Florida as long as possible.
In my view, the administrative state in Washington, D.C. (having spent almost a decade there) has become too big for any executive to wrest control over, even one as competent as the Florida governor.
Donald Trump ran on the platform of “draining The Swamp,” and by any objective measurement, The Swamp has grown substantially since 2016. While DeSantis was able to make top-down executive decisions to protect freedoms in Florida, he will not be afforded the same leeway in Washington, which is home to a uniparty rife with looters beholden to special interests.
As we witnessed with the Trump Administration, sending a reformer to Washington is something akin to naming Jordan Peterson the president of Harvard, and expecting him to fix the entirety of the institutional rot in Cambridge. It’s a task that will be met with full-fledged roadblocks and hostility.
How could we forget that just a handful of years ago, the U.S. Intelligence Community — which is supposed to be commanded under the direction of POTUS — made it its mission to depose Donald Trump via a series of elaborate coup attempts. Nobody has been held responsible for the Russia hoax or the series of regular attempts to dethrone the president from within the “deep state.” Not a single federal intelligence official, past or present, has received as much as a slap on the wrist for attempting to overthrow the duly elected president of the United States.
Sure, a DeSantis Administration could learn from the experience and battles of the Trump Administration, both the shortcomings and the successes. But in reality, there is probably not much separation between the policies of a 2nd term Donald Trump or a 1st term Ron DeSantis at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Both men would use their executive power to reverse the Biden Administration’s controlled demolition of American energy, and fix other avenues of glaring inadequacy and purposeful destruction.
But most importantly, at this point in the age of our republic, there is no “fixing” our federal institutions. They are irreparably broken, and they continue to grow like weeds. Instead, these institutions need to be uprooted, destroyed, and disbanded forever.
That is only possible through a decentralized bottom-up movement. The culture needs to change. The money needs to change. The institutions need to change. Very few of these objectives can be accomplished by the man in the White House.
As a newish Floridian, my personal preference at the moment is to keep our governor in Florida. That may change, but for now, I would be more than happy to keep Ron DeSantis in Tallahassee for the maximum amount of time possible.