Ron DeSantis Finally Attacked Trump.

And he didn’t look comfortable doing it.

Lauren Elizabeth
3 min readSep 28


Ron DeSantis, via ANA GOÑI-LESSAN USA TODAY NETWORK / Tallahassee Democrat

Well, the second Republican primary debate took place last night and once again Donald Trump was not present, choosing instead to go speak to auto workers in Michigan. Of course, he lamented the fact that in his view, auto workers were striking for the wrong thing. Why fight for higher pay when they should be striking over electric vehicles, right?

Nevertheless the debate went on and a few of his fellow candidates predictably decided to use the opportunity to attack Trump, with Ron DeSantis finally counting himself among them.

It went about as well as you would expect.

In their recap of the second Republican link, Michelle Price and Nicholas Riccardi with AP write:

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis had an aggressive start, using his first answer to criticize Trump for skipping the debate and for adding to the national debt while serving as president.

“Donald Trump is missing in action,” DeSantis said. “He should be here on this stage tonight. He owes it to you to defend his record.”…

…DeSantis found an opportunity later in the debate to hit Trump on abortion, an area where he’s recently stepped up his attacks from the right.

DeSantis said Trump was wrong to blame the Republican Party’s lackluster performance in the 2022 midterm elections on the overturning of national abortion rights.

“He should be here explaining his comments,” DeSantis said. “I want him to look into the eyes and tell people who’ve been fighting this fight for a long time.”

Since before he even announced his intentions to run for President, it seemed difficult to imagine Ron DeSantis ever being able to attack Donald Trump effectively. It’s not as though the unwavering support of the base was going to make things any easier to begin with, but even setting that aside…how could he?

It’s been brought up countless times that Ron DeSantis was made by Donald Trump, and no one knows it better than he does. Not only does the Florida Governor lack the charisma or the emotion required to actually put a dent in Trump’s support, but he knows what the response would be if he did, and it wouldn’t go well for him. People know DeSantis is only doing this because he was politically advised to do so, and it makes him seem even less like a real human being than he did beforehand.

If this was his idea of actually attacking Ron DeSantis, then it should be pretty clear that DeSantis regrets running. He did this to himself, and it’s admittedly satisfying to see the political aspirations of someone like him crumble the way that they have. I don’t think he has a future outside of Florida, and if nothing else that could be considered a silver lining coming out of what seems to be the inevitable Trump vs. Biden rematch.

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Lauren Elizabeth

Lauren is a writer & leftist with analysis on topics related to politics & policy. She can be reached at or Twitter @xlauren_mx