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Since Donald Trump made his famous ride down his golden escalator to announce his candidacy for the presidency, the New York Times has declared him to be "evil," an "authoritarian strongman," and compared him to dictators. However, a new piece in the Gray Lady suggests that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is actually "meaner" than Trump. The NYT article even compliments Trump for exuding "natural charisma." The article was lampooned on Twitter
Jamelle Bouie wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times titled: "What the Martha's Vineyard Stunt Says About the Trump Wannabees."
The article begins, "Ron DeSantis, the Republican governor of Florida, likes to do stunts. It is a key part of how he’s built his reputation as a fighter for conservative causes — a reputation he hopes to ride to the White House."
Bouie berated DeSantis for flying 50 illegal immigrants to Martha's Vineyard.
"The conceit of this dehumanizing bit of political theater was that the liberal denizens of Martha’s Vineyard would reject the migrants out of hypocrisy, thus proving that Democrats aren’t actually interested in welcoming immigrants into their communities." To DeSantis and his amen corner, asylum seekers are disposable, and they believe that liberals will want to dispose of them too."
All within 48 hours of the arrival of 50 illegal immigrants, the Martha's Vineyard Chamber of Commerce declared a "humanitarian crisis," the Massachusetts National Guard was activated, and the migrants were shipped off to Joint Base Cape Cod – "a full-scale, joint-use base home to five military commands training for missions at home and overseas, conducting airborne search and rescue missions, and intelligence command and control."
Bouie argued that the "stunt failed to make its intended point."
The Times writer said DeSantis mimics Trump, and has "made himself into something of an heir apparent to the former president."
Bouie claimed that DeSantis comes off "a lot like a bully" to a typical person. The writer notes that Trump is also a bully, but then sang the praises of the former Republican president.
But Donald Trump is also a lifelong celebrity with a public persona that is as much about 'The Apprentice' and even 'Home Alone 2' as it is about his political career. What’s more, Trump has the skills of a celebrity. He’s funny, he has stage presence, and he has a kind of natural charisma. He can be a bully in part because he can temper his cruelty and egoism with the performance of a clown or a showman. He can persuade an audience that he’s just kidding — that he doesn’t actually mean it. Ron DeSantis cannot.
Bouie then wrote of DeSantis, "He may be a more competent Trump in terms of his ability to use the levers of state to amass power, but he’s also meaner and more rigid, without the soft edges and eccentricity of the actual Donald Trump. DeSantis might be able to mimic Trump, in parts, but he does not have the temperament or personality to be another Trump."
Bouie said "DeSantis might flop like one of his stunts" on the national stage.
\u201cIn Opinion\n\nRon DeSantis \u201cmay be a more competent Trump in terms of his ability to use the levers of state to amass power, but he\u2019s also meaner and more rigid, without the soft edges and eccentricity of the actual Donald Trump,\u201d writes @jbouie. https://t.co/iG8mv63mOW\u201d— The New York Times (@The New York Times) 1663440906
Reactions on Twitter mocked the New York Times for branding DeSantis to be "meaner" than Trump.
Republican communicator Matt Whitlock: "'The soft edges of Donald Trump' is a hilarious set-up to the inevitable 'actually DeSantis is worse than Trump' we all knew was coming."
Attorney Ted Frank: "Wow, Literal Hitler Trump had soft edges."
Conservative commentator Matt Walsh: "NYT calls DeSantis a 'meaner' Trump who is better at using the levers of the state. They mean this as an insult. But it is exactly why I like him."
Radio host Jesse Kelly: "This is why it’s so hilarious/pathetic to watch various pundits on the Right surrender to the narrative that Trump was somehow a uniquely dangerous person. That’s not reality. That’s the narrative they’ll sell you for every new one. It’s all fiction. All lies."
Author Inez Stepman: "Omg they’re shameless. The only good R is the R that is less of a threat at any given moment, no matter how many Nazi accusations have been flung."
Writer Ryan Saavedra: "'We like the last guy better because he was more bark than bite. This new guy bites and he bites hard.'"
Public relations director John Cooper: "Lol here’s a NYT columnist writing wistfully about the 'softer edges of Trump.' This guy wrote a 2019 piece accusing Trump of 'using the presidency to stir anger and incite hatred' and rallying 'crowds with racist demagogy.' Pure hackery."
CEO Joe Colangelo: "'Trump is a unique threat to democracy, but DeSantis is worse' is not a persuasive argument. Statistically it's unlikely and the exact same people said Romney was evil just a few years ago."
Author Ilya Shapiro: "'Strange new respect' comes early for Trump in an effort to derail DeSantis. Not surprising given the author tbh."
Podcast host Liz Wheeler: "You say this like it’s an insult."
Journalist Brendon Leslie: "The media is getting a head start on framing DeSantis as 'meaner' than Trump because they know one day he’ll be unstoppable."
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Paul Sacca is a staff writer for Blaze News.