Feehery: The Floridian the Democrats really fear

Feehery: The Floridian the Democrats really fear
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Should Joe BidenJoe BidenKlain on Manchin's objection to Neera Tanden: He 'doesn't answer to us at the White House' Senators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Overnight Defense: New Senate Armed Services chairman talks Pentagon policy nominee, Afghanistan, more | Biden reads report on Khashoggi killing | Austin stresses vaccine safety in new video MORE decide to run again for president, one Florida resident represents the biggest threat to his reelection. And no, I am not talking about Donald TrumpDonald TrumpSenators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House Georgia secretary of state withholds support for 'reactionary' GOP voting bills MORE.

There is ample evidence that Team Biden is growing increasingly nervous about Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisDeSantis defends Florida over lack of detailed vaccine distribution plan Trump to attack Biden in CPAC speech Palm Beach County officials refuse order to lower flags for Limbaugh MORE, the Florida governor, so nervous that they floated out the idea of cutting off the Sunshine State from domestic travel because of made-up fears of COVID-19.

DeSantis has handled the coronavirus better than any other elected official in the world, outside of Sweden. He has resisted imposing worthless and counter-productive mask mandates. He has worked overtime to keep all schools open in his state. He has led the country in vaccinating at-risk senior citizens. He has used actual science and examined actual data, not bowing to the fantasy narratives spun by Washington bureaucrats.


As a result, DeSantis has vaulted himself to the top of the list for those conservatives who are looking for a true leader to run to replace Joe Biden in 2024.

DeSantis has created a positive economic environment in Florida while balancing rational health concerns about the negative effects of the novel coronavirus. As a result, businesses are flocking south, not just for the winter, but forever. Restaurants are opening there, not closing up shop. Entrepreneurs are investing. Businesses are growing. Theme-parks are thriving. Freedom is winning.

The Biden administration knows that DeSantis is not only a potential threat to take back the White House for the Republicans, but that his leadership provides a powerful counter-narrative to the doom and gloom provided by blue state governors and by the Democrats in Washington.

If people can live in freedom, if they can go to restaurants safely, if they don’t have to wear masks, if they can operate their businesses, if their kids can go to school, all in Florida, lots of Americans are asking the question: Why can’t we do all of those things here?

The effort to recall California Gov. Gavin Newsome and the recent revelations of nursing home malfeasance by New York Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoFormer Cuomo aide says governor kissed her without consent Cuomo job approval drops 6 points amid nursing home controversy: poll Cruz blames criticism of Cancun trip on media 'Trump withdrawal' MORE show that the bloom has come off the rose of lock-down governors. Their incompetence is only the tip of the blue-state iceberg. Voters are getting increasingly tired of the shutdowns, increasingly angry at the complete failure to control the teachers’ unions, increasingly fed up with dire predictions that are meant to inflame and not inform. The American people are starting to figure out that the power grabs are not meant to protect them, but rather to control them.


The idea to shut down domestic travel to Florida as a way to bring DeSantis down a peg or two must be thoroughly resisted by every Republican governor, representative and senator. This would be an outrageous power grab by the federal government and by the new president.

I would urge every red state governor and every state legislature controlled by the Republican Party to issue proclamations in support of Florida, putting the Biden administration on notice that they won’t have their state’s support should they take this unprecedented action.

I would also urge state officials to follow the DeSantis model, if they aren’t already, when it comes to reopening schools, reopening businesses and getting rid of useless mask mandates.

What has been working in Florida will work in the rest of the country.

Follow the actual science and the actual data.

Get all schools open, five days a week. Get all businesses, especially restaurants, open. Get all seniors vaccinated, with as little ridiculous bureaucracy as possible, as soon as possible.

Donald Trump lost the election in 2020 because he mishandled COVID. Ron DeSantis might very well win the presidential election in 2024 because he has handled COVID the way that Trump should have handled it but didn’t, with competence and professionalism.

The Democrats are right to fear a Floridian when it comes to the election of 2024. It’s DeSantis, though, not Trump.

Feehery is a partner at EFB Advocacy and blogs at www.thefeeherytheory.com. He served as spokesman to former Speaker Dennis HastertJohn (Dennis) Dennis HastertFeehery: How Republicans can win by focusing on schools Feehery: The Floridian the Democrats really fear John Feehery: The great distraction MORE (R-Ill.), as communications director to former Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas) when he was majority whip and as a speechwriter to former House Minority Leader Bob Michel (R-Ill.).