In The New York Sun, Dean Karayanis dissects last night’s NewsNation debate between four of the GOP primary challengers, and suggests that DeSantis won by making the most of his appearance. Karayanis reports:
Judged by the crowd reaction, Mr. DeSantis was the victor. Of course, without Mr. Trump — “who doesn’t have the guts to show up,” as Mr. Christie put it — that’s rather like winning the NFL Pro Bowl, a little-watched affair that’s a poor substitute for a Super Bowl ring.
Nevertheless, Mr. DeSantis made the most of his moment. Applause and cheers blew the roof off at the University of Alabama when he promised to challenge Communist China’s crimson tide, deploy the military to the border, and protect children from irreversible transgender surgery.
Messers Ramaswamy and DeSantis both challenged Ms. Haley for doing business with military contractors after her service at the United Nations and with Beijing while governor of South Carolina, the third primary state. When she called the charges lies, Mr. DeSantis pointed people to his website where he promised evidence.
Mr. DeSantis was the only candidate to get in that kind of plug, save Mr. Christie, who mentioned he’s writing a book on Reagan when asked to cite his role model as commander-in-chief. Reagan was an obvious answer, and by getting the question first, Mr. Christie took the Gipper off the board.
Ms. Haley chose Washington and Lincoln. Mr. Ramaswamy tapped Jefferson because he, too, was in his youth when he wrote the Declaration of Independence.
Mr. DeSantis cited President Coolidge, “who got almost everything right.” It was a clever way to embrace the origin of Reaganism. The 40th president used the 30th as his template for governing, hanging his portrait in the White House Cabinet Room.
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