Trump Attacks DeSantis and Florida, Cites Multiple Progressive Groups

The shadow primary battle between Ron DeSantis and Donald Trump ratcheted up a notch on Friday after the former president’s campaign issued a lengthy statement targeting the Florida governor and accusing him of leaving a “wake of destruction” across the Sunshine State. The Trump campaign cited multiple progressive groups and MSNBC host Joy Reid claiming that Florida continues “to tumble into complete and total delinquency and destruction.” The press release, “The Real Ron DeSantis Playbook,” was sent through an email blast to supporters.

“The real DeSantis record is one of misery and despair,” said Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung,

“He has left a wake of destruction all across Florida and people are hurting because he has spent more time playing public relations games instead of actually doing the hard-work needed to improve the lives of the people he represents,”

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Despite living in Florida, Trump and his campaign have taken a U-turn on their opinion of the state, claiming it has “become among the worst states” in several categories. The campaign primarily targeted Florida’s cost of living, citing the progressive left National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) in claiming that Florida is “one of the least affordable states to live.”

The NLIHC describes themselves as “dedicated to achieving racially and socially equitable public policy” and are frequent advocates on transgender issues. The nonprofit is part of the Alliance for Justice, a George Soros-funded 501(c)(3) focused on “Left-Wing Judicial Policy Advocacy,” according to InfluenceWatch.

The press release also referenced the Substack of DeSantis critic Jason Garcia, claiming that the governor raised taxes by more than $1.5 billion in his first term. In his analysis, however, Garcia noted that DeSantis had cut taxes by $4 billion.

The campaign additionally cited the Florida Policy Institute, founded in 2014 as a “left-leaning policy research and advocacy organization,” and Oxfam, which InfluenceWatch describes as a “left-of-center” organization.

While DeSantis did not directly address the attack, his deputy press secretary, Jeremy Redfern, tweeted shortly after the email blast,

Under [Governor DeSantis], Florida was the fastest growing state in 2022 and had the largest net domestic in-migration. Florida also saw an all-time record for tourism with 137,565,000 visitors, even with Biden’s pseudoscientific COVID-19 vaccine mandate for international travelers.

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Trump also attacked DeSantis on Truth Social, posting an excerpt from the blog of MSNBC host Joy Reid, which called DeSantis’ recent trip to Washington D.C. a “charm offensive” and a “massive failure.” Reid, the far-left host of TheReidOut, has made a career out of attacking Republicans, including the two 2024 GOP frontrunners. In September, Reid described Trump as a “warlord” and compared him to the likes of Jim Jones, Benito Mussolini, and Adolf Hitler.

While DeSantis has not officially thrown his hat into the ring, he is widely expected to make a campaign announcement following the end of the Florida legislative session in May.

Trump has received the endorsement of half of Florida’s House GOP delegation so far and hosted the ten members at his Mar-a-Lago club on Thursday. DeSantis received the endorsement of freshman Florida Congresswoman Laurel Lee on Tuesday.

Other stories you may want to read:

New York City Mayor Eric Adams Says City is “Destroyed’ by Migrants

DeSantis Sounds Alarm: Democrats Will Destroy America if They Win in 2024

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