DeSantis Continues Striking Out With Florida GOP Members of Congress

DeSantis Continues Striking Out With Florida GOP Members of Congress

There have been events in my district that I was specifically told I couldn't be part of the press conference, told to go stand in the corner, and was not allowed to be participating in that when he was in my district so, it's you can't win friends and influence people that way, especially in the political realm,” said Rep. Steube.

Javier Manjarres
Javier Manjarres
|
April 21, 2023

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been hitting the ball out of the park for Floridians ever since he took the oath of office in 2019, but as he inches closer to running for President in 2024 and continues swinging for the fences,  “America’s Governor” has been striking out with garnering congressional support for his presidential candidacy.

Once he announces, Gov. DeSantis will be the clear Trump Republican presidential alternative in the growing field of GOP presidential hopefuls.

But while endorsements of any kind are seen as important to some, and not-so-important by others, certain key or mounting congressional endorsements speak volumes as it relates to whom members of Congress believe is ready to sit in the Oval Office.

Soon after it was reported that DeSantis’s team was reaching out to members of Florida’s congressional delegation in order to mitigate the damage of the expected avalanche of congressional endorsements for former President Trump, more Florida members have thrown their support for the former president.

Rep. Byron Donalds, who stunned DeSantis and politicos around the country by sidestepping DeSantis and endorsing Trump, started the endorsement domino effect.

Shortly after Rep. Donalds endorsed, Rep. Cory Mills followed and was then joined in quick succession by Reps. Gus Bilirakis, Vern Buchanan, Brian Mast, Michael Waltz, and John Rutherford.

Other Republican members like Reps. Kat Cammack, Carlos Gimenez, Bill Posey, Neal Dunn, Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, and possibly Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar, are all expected to come out in support of Trump over DeSantis.

Rep. Laurel Lee is the only congressional endorsement DeSantis has garnered from his home state of Florida.

Courtesy of Cory Mills
Courtesy of Cory Mills

To make things worse, Reps. Steube, Mills, and Donalds, all appeared on the Fox News Channel to praise President Trump as being the only candidate who is “ready on Day 1” to be President of the United States.

Rep. Steube, not only reaffirmed his support for Trump but reiterated that DeSantis has shunned him for 5 years.

“There have been multiple opportunities where I have gone up to him and talked to him, giving him my cell phone number, and asked him to reach out to me. There have been events in my district that I was specifically told I couldn't be part of the press conference, told to go stand in the corner, and was not allowed to be participating in that when he was in my district so, it's you can't win friends and influence people that way, especially in the political realm,” said Rep. Steube. “I walked up to him gave him my cell phone number said hey I need to talk to you about Lake Okeechobee when I first got elected,  and not even a person from his staff called me back.

Rep. Donalds said he still supports DeSantis, but not as president.

“I haven't stopped my support of Ron DeSantis we're just talking about the presidency,” said Donalds. “Look our country is in a real problem and you got to be able to hit the ground running on Day 1. We know Donald Trump can do it he did it once before he can do it again.”

Rep. Mills was in concert with Steube and Donalds, adding that even though he backs Trump over DeSantis, he was not “trying to diminish the impact” that DeSantis has made in the state

There have been events in my district that I was specifically told I couldn't be part of the press conference, told to go stand in the corner, and was not allowed to be participating in that when he was in my district so, it's you can't win friends and influence people that way, especially in the political realm."—Rep. Greg Steube.

You know we've got a great governor. He's done a tremendous job. I am not in any way trying to diminish the impact that he's had here in the state of Florida, but what we need is a person who can actually lead on Day 1,” said Mills. “Governor Desantis has done a great job as governor but President Trump has shown to be a great president.

Another Trump endorsement that could turn out to really sting DeSantis is that of Rep. Mast.

Rep. Mast has been at odds with every single Republican congressional caucus member from Florida on water issues, but not DeSantis.

DeSantis has been inline with the Everglades Foundation, which is part of the Everglades Coalition of environmental groups like The Sierra Club, and the George Soros-funded, The Center for Biological Diversity.

The CBD has boasted about suing the Trump administration over 200 times, and recently filed suit against DeSantis blaming him for the “mismanaging toxic waste at Piney Point” after 480 million gallons of wastewater from the facility was released into Tampa Bay.

It is important to understand that DeSantis has not entered the race, yet.

While congressional endorsement can prove to be helpful, they may not sway many voters. Today’s voters are a lot more engaged and educated on issues.

Even though DeSantis trails Trump in the latest Wall Street Journal poll by 24 points, there are just too many variables in political to believe that DeSantis’s campaign is over before it even began.

Remember, early in the 2010 U.S. Senate race between now-Senator Marco Rubio and then-Governor Charlie Crist, Crist had a commanding, almost insurmountable, lead in all the polls over Rubio.

American politics are very fluid.

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Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres is a nationally renowned award-winning political journalist and Publisher of Floridianpress.com, Hispolitica.com, shark-tank.com, and Texaspolitics.com He enjoys traveling, playing soccer, mixed martial arts, weight-lifting, swimming, and biking. Javier is also a political consultant and has also authored "BROWN PEOPLE," which is a book about Hispanic Politics. Follow on Twitter: @JavManjarres Email him at Diversenewmedia@gmail.com

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