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Why the Anti-Anti-Trumpers Need Ron DeSantis
Plus: Blue Check Trainwreck.
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NICHOLAS GROSSMAN: Why the Anti-Anti-Trumpers Need Ron DeSantis
IT WASN’T THAT LONG AGO THAT Ron DeSantis looked like Donald Trump’s heir apparent—beloved by the base, but with mainstream appeal, basically “Trump without the baggage.” Now the narrative has flipped. DeSantis is struggling: Back in January, he was just 13 points behind Trump in the RealClearPolitics national polling average; today Trump is ahead by more than 30. Some state polls had shown DeSantis ahead in Iowa or New Hampshire, but now he’s behind (often by a lot).
It’s almost a year until the first votes, and a lot could change. DeSantis hasn’t announced yet, he still has funding, and he could still win people over. Trump could crack under legal pressure, sending all but his ardent fans looking for an alternative. Declaring DeSantis dead would be a mistake, not least because every other GOP candidate is polling in the single digits.
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CATHY YOUNG: Blue Check Trainwreck.
The recent Battle of the Blue Checks (who has them? who doesn’t? who doesn’t want them but has them anyway?) undoubtedly counts as one of the dumbest episodes in Twitter history—and that’s saying a lot. But it is also, in its immense stupidity, a fitting symbol of the broader culture wars.
A quick recap of how the saga unfolded over the last half-year: Soon after his acquisition of Twitter in October 2022, Elon Musk ordered those employees he hadn’t yet fired to unveil a paid “Twitter Blue” service that would replace the old verification system. Initially, the subscription was going to cost $19.99 a month and “legacy users” were going to lose their blue checkmarks within 90 days if they did not pay up. After an outcry, Musk offered to lower the fee to $8 a month in an exchange with author Stephen King.
Tucker was blindsided… According to reporting from Gabriel Sherman: “Carlson has told people he believes his controversial show is being taken off the air because the Murdoch children intend to sell Fox News at some point." He got a surprise Monday phone call after his email was shut off. Brian Stelter suggests the real reason for Tucker’s departure probably lies within the redacted portions of the Dominion exhibits.
A few years ago, I mocked a failed bit on Tucker’s show and it went viral on Twitter. Out of nowhere, I got this from the Tuck himself:
Not only did I get this framable email, Tucker had to bring on Greg Gutfeld on the show the following day to explain his joke and why, actually, it was funny. And who could forget this? Here’s a montage to remember Tucker’s, er, legacy.
RFK is running a Republican campaign… In a Democratic primary.
Rightwing Edgelords… Are the Real Threat to National Security
Why should we trust science? Because it doesn’t trust itself! A worthwhile pod from our friends at Connors Forum.
The Georgia election interference charges… Are coming… in July?
A dispatch from the Fringes… Yes, MAGA rap is real. Unfortunately.
Meanwhile, in Georgia’ Fringes… They’re becoming mainstream.
…And in Michigan… Ottawa county goes to war with itself.
Canada’s Ketchup wars… How Heinz made a costly mistake.
Is this… where the “parallel economy” is going?
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