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DeSantis Debate Strategy LEAKS: Defend Trump and ‘Hammer’ Ramaswamy

Hindsight’s 20/20, isn’t it?

If there’s one thing that can be gleaned from Ron DeSantis’s recent campaign strategy pivot, it’s a glaring lack of foresight.

After taking jabs at President Trump, DeSantis suddenly finds himself backpedaling faster than a crab retreating from an oncoming wave.

Now, in a desperate attempt to salvage what’s left of his presidential ambitions, he’s scrambling to make nice.

It’s the political equivalent of waking up late, rushing to a crucial meeting, and then realizing halfway there that you left your presentation at home.

This newly uncovered treasure trove of documents is essentially a playbook for how to “win” the next debate, complete with a neat to-do list for the Florida Governor.

But what’s glaringly evident isn’t the content of these “strategies” but the sheer reactionary nature of them.

A checklist that includes “Attack Joe Biden and the media” no less than 3-5 times?

That doesn’t sound like the blueprint of a confident contender but rather a cornered candidate looking for an exit strategy.

The highlight, however?

His team’s adamant advice to defend President Trump.

It’s a testament to how, perhaps, DeSantis misread the room.

The irony isn’t lost on observers: the very man he once deemed a worthy adversary, he now seeks to appease, almost like a student seeking a professor’s forgiveness after missing a major deadline.

But this raises the age-old question – if DeSantis and his team couldn’t predict the repercussions of their previous moves, can they be trusted to foresee and handle the challenges of running a nation?

If this recent fumble is any indication, it appears the Floridian might be a few chess moves behind in a game where the stakes are sky-high.

The New York Times has the details on DeSantis’ debate prep strategy:

Ron DeSantis needs “to take a sledgehammer” to Vivek Ramaswamy, the political newcomer who is rising in the polls. He should “defend Donald Trump” when Chris Christie inevitably attacks the former president. And he needs to “attack Joe Biden and the media” no less than three to five times.

A firm associated with the super PAC that has effectively taken over Mr. DeSantis’s presidential campaign posted online hundreds of pages of blunt advice, research memos and internal polling in early nominating states to guide the Florida governor ahead of the high-stakes Republican presidential debate next Wednesday in Milwaukee.

The trove of documents provides an extraordinary glimpse into the thinking of the DeSantis operation about a debate the candidate’s advisers see as crucial.

“There are four basic must-dos,” one of the memos urges Mr. DeSantis, whom the document refers to as “GRD.”

“1. Attack Joe Biden and the media 3-5 times. 2. State GRD’s positive vision 2-3 times. 3. Hammer Vivek Ramaswamy in a response. 4. Defend Donald Trump in absentia in response to a Chris Christie attack.”

The documents were posted this week on the website of Axiom Strategies, the company owned by Jeff Roe, the chief strategist of Mr. DeSantis’s super PAC, Never Back Down.

DeSantis pulling a ‘Trump’ or merely desperate for a breakthrough?

It’s always an interesting scene when politicians resort to adopting strategies that don’t quite fit their typical playbook.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, in an apparent moment of urgency, seems to be taking a page out of former President Trump’s book – handing out belittling nicknames to opponents.

But unlike Trump’s seemingly innate knack for branding, DeSantis’s attempt appears more forced than fluent.

“Fake Vivek” or “Vivek the Fake”?


This is a move that smacks of desperation and unoriginality.

The GOP electorate, known for its keen sense of authenticity, will undoubtedly note the stark contrast.

Vivek Ramaswamy, the 38-year-old businessman with a surprising surge in popularity, has consistently supported and defended Trump.

It’s as if DeSantis is attempting to fight a mirror reflection with a dim flashlight.

While the memo from DeSantis’ allies at the super PAC ‘Never Back Down’ pushes for DeSantis to rise to Trump’s defense against Chris Christie, the question remains: Why attack a steadfast Trump supporter like Vivek with such a low-tier nickname?

It’s like trying to prove you’re the biggest fan of a rock band by mocking someone wearing the band’s T-shirt. The strategy simply doesn’t add up.

NBC has more details on how DeSantis is planning to steal Trump’s nick-naming strategy:

Allies of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis outlined a strategy for next week’s GOP presidential primary debate in a memo encouraging him to defend former President Donald Trump from attacks by rival Chris Christie and call upstart contender Vivek Ramaswamy “fake.”

The two-page memo, written by leaders of the pro-DeSantis super PAC Never Back Down, was published to the website of Axiom Strategies and dated Aug. 15. Axiom founder Jeff Roe also leads the pro-DeSantis’ super PAC.

“Defend Trump when Chris Christie attacks him,” the memo reads, adding a potential line for DeSantis to use on stage in Milwaukee against the former governor of New Jersey: “Trump isn’t here so let’s just leave him alone. He’s too weak to defend himself here. We’re all running against him. I don’t think we want to join forces with someone on this stage who’s auditioning for a show on MSNBC.”

On Ramaswamy, the 38-year-old businessman whose long-shot campaign has seen upward movement in the polls in recent weeks, the DeSantis allies write that the Florida governor needs to “take a sledge-hammer” to him, calling him “Fake Vivek” or “Vivek the Fake.”

Given the recent revelations, one can’t help but wonder if the real ‘fake’ is DeSantis himself, desperately trying to mold into a form that the GOP electorate will embrace.

Yet, in trying to mimic the Trump magic, he might just end up revealing his own sleight of hand.


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