Trump and DeSantis deploy different styles and messages as rivalry escalates

former President Donald Trump and Governor Ron DeSantis delivered a high-profile speech this week, demonstrating a political brand of difference.

Trump has been twice impeached and acquitted For two hours at the Conservative Political Action Committee in a Maryland hotel ballroom, he repeated lies about the 2020 election results. DeSantis delivered his nearly 30-minute annual report state address state At the Florida Capitol in Tallahassee.

There is no doubt that both Trump and DeSantis are anchored on the far right of the GOP spectrum. There is one similarity between

Mr Trump’s speech was marked by a particularly acrimonious rear-view mirror remark in which the former president threatened “I’m your retaliation” on behalf of those with political dissatisfaction. By contrast, DeSantis Health analysts’ long-held ‘free Florida’ mantra is rooted in disinformation about COVID-19, promising lawmakers and residents ‘we haven’t seen anything yet’ in a forward-looking speech .

Voting for 2024:Poll Shows Florida Republican Voters and DeSantis Lead Trump, Assessing Opinion on DEI, Guns and Vouchers

Here are five ways Trump and DeSantis seem to be delivering very different messages.

1. Length: Donald Trump’s filibuster and Ron DeSantis’ brevity

These two speeches are not the only ones.

Trump’s typical political rally speech resembles a sort of political Rocky Horror Show, prompting the audience to chant “Lock her up!” Or “Drain the swamp!” She lasted 100 minutes. Meanwhile, Trump often riffs on anecdotes from his days negotiating real estate deals and conversations with world leaders during his single term in the White House.

DeSantis’ public appearances typically last about 30 minutes. His speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in north Los Angeles this month took nearly 45 minutes. DeSantis’ address is easy. He rarely sets out for impromptu meditations or jokes with his audience.

Also read:Differences between Trump and DeSantis on election night: Trump’s calm tone and DeSantis’ thunder

2. Tone: Trump’s dystopia and DeSantis’ rebellious heartthrob

If anything, Trump’s “American Carnage” theme, best illustrated in his January 2017 inaugural address, has gotten darker and more toxic.

At CPAC, Trump said that “evil forces trying to kill America” ​​are “criminals, junkies, Marxists, thugs, extremists, socialists for dangerous refugees,” among other unwanted people. He warned that he was trying to create a “garbage dump site for

“If those who oppose us succeed, the once-beautiful United States will become a failed nation that no one even recognizes. is.”

DeSantis performs a different theme. He uses a version of Trump’s “I’m alone” assertion, imbued with bullish defiance.

“We have the opportunity, and indeed the responsibility, to swing for the fence so that we can ensure Florida remains number one,” he said. Don’t worry about Ignore all the background noise Set your compass to true north We will stand strong Hold the line We won’t retreat And I will tell you I can promise you this, you haven’t seen anything yet.”

Previous coverage:His hold over the Republican Party has weakened in 2022.

3. Rhetoric: Trump’s Personal Grievances and DeSantis’ Social Resistance

Many of Trump’s speeches, marked by “me” and “you,” are a parade of complaints against the “political class,” including RINOS (Republicans in name only), the media, and globalists.

“They know we can beat them. They know we can beat them,” Trump said at CPAC. “But they’re not chasing me. They’re chasing you. I’m just getting in their way. That’s all I’m doing. I’m getting in their way.” That’s why I’m here today.’ So I’m standing in front of you. “

Like Trump, DeSantis plays “them” and “them” politics. He has targeted LGBTQ+ tolerance programs in schools and most recently taught black history in high schools under the guise of an anti-awakening campaign. As such, he is despised by activists. And, of course, he calls the COVID protective measures a “biomedical security state.”

But Florida governors are adopting a more overarching rhetoric, at least in a ostensible effort to gain broad social approval in Florida. DeSantis was ranked No. 7 on the popularity rankings, trailing only Republican Phil Scott of Vermont and Chris Snunu of New Hampshire, according to the poll.

Still, DeSantis is more likely than Trump to sprinkle his messages with calls to action: “we,” “we,” “we.” And he cites November’s landslide victory as proof that his policies have been accepted by the public.

“The November election results represent validation of our collective efforts over the past four years. Boldness, be our friend in this endeavor, we have much to achieve.”

Other stories:Trump issues angry letter to ‘average Republican’ Ron DeSantis, saying he has no class

4. Policy: Donald Trump’s ‘Out of Script’ vs. Ron DeSantis’ ‘BLUF’

Trump is no policy nerd. Arriving at the policy prescriptions in Trump’s speech requires a great deal of research—patience. Policy at CPAC includes attacks on a “racist” prosecutor, a salvo against the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on his tax case, condemnation of the Biden administration for the withdrawal of Afghan troops, and domestic and global leadership. interwoven among countless tales of his dealings with

“People like me to be a little off script, don’t they?” he said. “It’s a little more risky, but more exciting.”

The numerous agenda items he mentioned included having the children’s parents elect school principals and renaming schools and roads “not after the communists, but after the great American patriots.” , excludes the United States from the World Health Organization, adds “all Biden policies promoting chemical castration and sexual mutilation of our youth,” border walls, and more.

At the beginning of his March 7 speech, DeSantis used the military acronym BLUF.

That was the organizational focus of his 30-minute speech, and it quickly got to the point. The governor will seek $2 billion in tax cuts, including a permanent suspension of the sales tax on baby products. He continues his environmental efforts to combat red tide and blue-green algae. He emphasized effective government, like his response to Hurricane Ian last fall. He promotes workforce education, including programs that enhance truck driver training. He also plans to speed up the construction of roads and highways to further ease traffic congestion.

As quoted by DeSantis, BLUF said: Florida ranks first in population growth, new business formation, economic growth among large states, tourism, and law enforcement recruitment and support.

“Florida is the best,” he said. “And working together, we will ensure that Florida remains the number one state in these United States.

5. What wasn’t mentioned: Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis are also playing politics of omission

Indeed, both Republicans with polls suggesting they’re the frontrunners for the Republican presidential nomination a year from now (assuming DeSantis joins the fray, soon after the Florida legislature ends in March). expected not to participate) worked a political ploy.

For example, President Trump has boasted that gas prices in the United States fell to $1.87 a gallon during his tenure. But he doesn’t say April 2020 was the lowest point for fuel prices, as the unemployment rate surged to almost 15% and the economic shutdown caused by the pandemic put 23 million people out of work.

DeSantis also plays the politics of omission.

In a state address, he boasted that Florida has posted record-breaking budgets in consecutive years for the past two fiscal years. What he doesn’t point out, however, is that the spending is being padded by federal dollars provided by the Biden administration and congressional Democrats. The same as , but the governor is willing to accept and spend so that beneficiaries can believe it is from his mercy.

Antonio Fins is a political and business editor. palm beach, part of the USA TODAY Florida network. You can contact him at Please support our journalism. Subscribe now. Trump and DeSantis deploy different styles and messages as rivalry escalates

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