GOP 'race is between populist Tweedledum and populist Tweedledee': conservative
Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis (Trump photo via AFP, DeSantis photo via Shutterstock)

Far from being the Republican Party's salvation from former President Donald Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is just a different incarnation of the exact same thing — and he could bring the GOP to the exact same ruination, argued conservative analyst David Brooks for The New York Times on Thursday.

This comes as DeSantis is coming under further heat for censorship in schools and crackdowns on corporations that criticize his cultural agenda.

"The Republican donor class is mobilizing to try to prevent a Trump nomination, and DeSantis is overpriced," wrote Brooks. "Do we really think a guy with a small, insular circle of advisers and limited personal skills is going to do well in the intimate contests in Iowa and New Hampshire? As voters focus on the economy, DeSantis massively erred in playing culture war issues so hard. The conclusion I draw is that the Trump-DeSantis duopoly is unstable and represents a wing of the party many people are getting sick of."

The irony, he argued, is that there are plenty of Republican governors who would probably have a better record to run on.

"Gov. Brian Kemp, for example, is making Georgia a hub for green manufacturing, attracting immense investments in electric vehicle technologies. In his inaugural address, he vowed to make Georgia 'the electric mobility capital of America.' As Alexander Burns noted in Politico, Kemp doesn’t sell this as climate change activism; it’s jobs and prosperity," wrote Brooks. Furthermore, "In Georgia Kemp took on Trump about the Big Lie and cruised to victory" — and the upshot is that polling shows Kemp has 20 percent higher approval among Republican voters in Georgia than Trump does.

"The elemental truth is that the Republican Party is like a baseball team that has tremendous talent in the minor leagues and a star pitcher who can’t throw strikes or do his job," argued Brooks. "Sooner or later, there’s going to be a change."

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