Against the Grain II
By Vaughab R. Wilson
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis took a stance that even registered Democrats have been awaiting for some time now. He stood up to former President Donald Trump last week, not mincing his words or speaking in code.
It his something that we have not seen since Trump’s rise to power. I would contend that Trump’s being barred from social media bolstered DeSantis’ arsenal and he spoke freely about his differences with Trump. Previously, many members of the GOP were afraid to “poke the bear” as Trump’s tens of million followers were an army of repeaters of whatever stance he took.
Members of the general public were held hostage in the aggressive interactions which happened primarily on Twitter. Trump’s unfiltered rage would come at all times of night. Whenever he felt that someone wasn’t following his lead, they became targets of his in unbridled cyber bullying.
What is surprising is that DeSantis was a known supporter of Trump and would acknowledge meeting him at the White House or talking to him on several occasions. Trump’s decision to move residence from New York to Florida was based heavily on his feeling that DeSantis would welcome him. In addition to the fact that investigations in New York into to several of Trump’s dealings and taxes were about to begin and he removed himself from the center of the circus.
In an unterview on Fox News in December, DeSantis was asked if he had received his booster vaccination. DeSantis skirted the question and expressed that he has done what he’s done with his vaccination and that his status was his personal medical decision. It is confirmed by several sources that DeSantis has indeed been vaccinated with the Johnson & Johnson method. Trump, speaking on his unofficial campaign trail, went after DeSantis saying that he hated politicians that skirted the question and that everyone should be vaccinated and receive their booster, referring him as “gutless.” Furthermore, he said that people in position like DeSantis needed to be clear to encourage others.
DeSantis came back directly at Trump just a day later. Doubling down on the right to privacy of his vaccination status and added that he was not a fan of some of Trump’s decisions on the matter of Covid-19. He accused Trump of panicking under the pressure of Dr. Anthony Fauci in locking down the country. DeSantis said he wished he had spoken louder in his opposition to Trump locking down the country.
This exchange with any other member of the GOP has not escalated to this level since Trump became president. He has ruled much like a Chicago mob boss, taking out (via social media) Democratic and Republican politicians who opposed him with a barrage of unwanted publicity by way of Twitter. He was relentless. Furthermore, his social media rages had become common in newscasts of reputable media platforms, extending its reach. Politicians felt it was literally political suicide to oppose Trump and be the focus of his rage.
Once Trump was barred from social media, a few little hints that the Republican Party would refuse to continue cower under the threat of Trump rule exploded with DeSantis’ stance. While it appears to be a personal duel between the two, with possible implications to the 2024 presidential race, to those not in the Republican and Democratic Parties it represents a welcome stance.
As a registered Democrat, I have watched too long on the sidelines as the GOP completely evaded many of its principles under the Trump Administration. I adhere and support many GOP principals. In my opinion, some of the best politicians have been Republican and some of their policies have literally saved America. What did bother me was the stark pivot to hate and absolutism on the totalitarian nature of a country held hostage by Trump rule. Governor DeSantis, I applaud you.