Is the Republican gubernatorial nomination a witness protection program?
It sure seems like it.
Since winning the GOP nomination, Ron Desantis has “fell off the radar” according to Politico Florida. After primary day, and his racist “monkey” comments, DeSantis has barely done any interviews and completely avoided holding public events.
It’s a strange move for a candidate who once promised to finally focus on Florida issues if he won the Republican nomination. In the primary, Adam Putnam attacked DeSantis nearly everyday for failing to lay out policies or talk about local issues. In order to deflect that criticism, DeSantis’ campaign manager told The Tampa Bay Times that in the general election, their candidate would finally unveil big policy ideas and talk about state government.
We’re still waiting…
DeSantis Manager: We’ll Talk Policy in The General Election. ‘If we answered all of them we would not have time to do everything else in the campaign. We just decided early on we were not going to answer those questions until we build out a communications team. But it’s going to happen in the general election,’ Herold said of the campaign that also declined invitations to speak to newspaper editorial boards about Florida issues.” [Tampa Bay Times, Adam Smith column, 8/3/18]
Tampa Bay Times Editorial: DeSantis “Based His Entire Campaign on the President’s Endorsement,” the Election “Has Been Depressingly Short of Any Substantive Discussion of State Issues.” According to a Tampa Bay Times editorial, “U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Palm Coast, has based his entire campaign on the president’s endorsement. It’s apparently working, but voters ought to insist on more than that for someone who wants to be governor. Yet the Republican primary race between DeSantis and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam has been depressingly short of any substantive discussion of state issues.” [Tampa Bay Times, editorial, 8/24/18]
DeSantis Was the Only Gubernatorial Candidate Not to Answer the Tampa Bay Times’ Question: “What is your commitment for increasing spending on public education, and how would you pay for that investment?” [Tampa Bay Times, 7/27/18]
DeSantis Was the Only Gubernatorial Candidate Not to Answer the Tampa Bay Times’ Question: “How would you expand access to health care?” [Tampa Bay Times, 7/27/18]
Naples Daily News: DeSantis Refused to Release a Criminal Justice Plan, Declined to Comment. According to the Naples Daily News, “DeSantis, who has been endorsed by Trump, has yet to release details on specific public safety policy plans. He would not agree to interview requests made through his campaign staff, and his political team did not respond to numerous requests for comment.” [Naples Daily News, 6/15/18]