DeSantis is coming to town
Behind the DeSantis LI stop
The Ron DeSantis tips-his-toe into the presidential waters tour is coming to Long Island Saturday as the Florida governor seeks to showcase the controversial policies that catapulted him into national politics. DeSantis’ book “The Courage to be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Revival” will be released next week.
Republicans on Long Island were sent text invites over the weekend to the event at the Cradle of Aviation Museum, and many Democrats were also on the contact list purchased by the organizers. General admission is free. The sponsor is a nonprofit issue advocacy group called “And to the Republic,” the same outfit that set up a recent support law enforcement session for DeSantis in Staten Island. The stop on LI comes in between DeSantis visits to Cobb County, Georgia and Franklin, Tennessee.
So-called dark money advocacy groups such as this are not required to make the names of their donors public, so it is unclear whether there is a Long Island GOP connection who assisted in bringing DeSantis to Nassau County and to the county museum. Museum officials were not available to discuss the details. “And to the Republic” appears to be struggling with its rollout, according to a weekend story in the Daily Beast which said Liberty Events Specialists, which was running the tour, canceled its contract with the nonprofit.
Don’t expect a lot of GOP organized support milling about the museum’s lunar model and vintage aircraft and cheering on DeSantis, at least not yet. The rising or falling fortunes of former President Donald Trump are being closely monitored, and Trump’s MAGA support remains strong in many quarters.
Suffolk GOP leader Jesse Garcia, when asked about interest in the event, said “honestly we are working very hard on local races,” noting how the focus was on 2023 and not 2024 as he listed the county executive, county legislative and town races taking up the time of his committee members.
— Rita Ciolli @ritaciolli
On the hook
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It’s all in the spin
- Donald Trump’s lawyer Joe Tacopina said Trump’s attack on Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg was “ill-advised.” Not that Trump was advised by anyone to do that.
- After a House of Representatives tour of the D.C. jail where Jan. 6 defendants are being held, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene held a news conference to complain about conditions there. Only one problem with her account, according to Democrats on the tour: None of her complaints was true.
- At his weekend campaign rally, former President Donald Trump told the crowd that if he is reelected “America will be a free nation once again.” For some, anyway, since Trump wants to put his “enemies” in jail.
- Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says it’s “bad strategy” for Ron DeSantis not to respond to former President Donald Trump’s campaign attacks. Is Christie having misgivings about not responding to Trump’s attacks on him in the 2016 campaign and ending his campaign in February?
- “John Wick: Chapter 4” premiered with the best opening weekend for the franchise. Either the filmmakers finally are hitting their stride or viewers are finally catching up with the franchise. Or both.
— Michael Dobie @mwdobie