DeSantis' Twitter Spaces Launch: A Bumpy Success"

Op Ed explores how DeSantis had a great launch leveraging the digital landscape but struggles to understand populism.

May 25, 2023

The political landscape is rapidly shifting, with Twitter Spaces serving as a pivotal platform for communication and engagement. In a move that can only be described as forward-thinking, Ron DeSantis marked his territory on Twitter, and in doing so, backed by Elon Musk, effectively secured his dominion over the internet – for now.

This digital takeover paints a stark contrast against Donald Trump's current media presence, limited mainly to Truth Social. The once-media-darling Trump now seems to be overshadowed by DeSantis's strategic maneuvering on the social media platform.

While DeSantis's political strategizing is commendable, a crucial aspect that he seems to be lacking is authenticity. Populist icons like Bernie Sanders and Ron Paul, despite their not traditionally charismatic personas, command respect through their authentic personas. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about DeSantis, whose authenticity seems watered down, resulting in a distrustful vibe.

However, once DeSantis found his stride in the Twitter Space launch announcement, he shined. His deep knowledge and insightful commentaries on a range of issues are commendable. The problem lies not in his substance but in his presentation. His Twitter Spaces debut, marred by technical glitches, could have been ironed out with a proper dry run.

DeSantis's scripted approach during his announcement seemed inorganic and unlike his usually robust rhetoric seen in speeches like his victory speech post the 2022 gubernatorial race. However, these hiccups didn't dilute the effectiveness of his launch, which has kick-started his campaign and created space for further engagement.

What's interesting is DeSantis's strategic move in the face of Trump's Twitter absence. DeSantis has effectively moved into a space that was previously dominated by Trump, leveraging the opportunity created by Trump's reluctance or inability to rejoin Twitter.

One can't ignore Trump's missteps when analyzing his political tenure – his poor personnel decisions and lackluster pandemic response stand out. DeSantis deftly pointed out these failures, showcasing his own strengths in comparison. However, he also has his shortcomings – his foreign policy views, more in line with neocon ideologies, starkly contrast with Trump's populist approach, which might not resonate with the people, especially during these uncertain geopolitical times.

The political chessboard is evolving, and as DeSantis and Trump position themselves in this high-stakes game, we can only hope that the best man, with the interests of the people at heart, triumphs.


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