The dust has settled after the 2022 midterms, and Democrats aren’t wasting an opportunity to divide the Republican Party. The “division” has to do with Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, two of the most popular Republicans in recent memory.
The “Trump vs. DeSantis” debate is real within Republican circles, but Democrats are blowing it way out of proportion for political purposes. President Biden, who calls DeSantis “Donald Trump incarnate” (like that’s a bad thing), claims “it’ll be fun watching them take on each other.” In the words of one Biden aide: “Oh, this is a ‘let’s get out the popcorn’ moment for him for sure. It is for all of us. But no one is loving this more than Biden.”
Then there’s the liberal media, which continues to frame a narrative that the Republican house is one divided. Running poll after poll on the hypothetical 2024 primary matchup, left-leaning news outlets can’t get enough of the notion that there’s Republican infighting, even if it’s mostly just a liberal fantasy. Headlines suggesting “war” between Trump and DeSantis are par for the course, but that’s really not the case on the ground.
Fact check: Republicans are very, very optimistic about 2024. If anything, it will be exciting to see two strong candidates take on the Biden agenda when the Democrats can’t even field one, assuming Trump stays in the race and DeSantis enters it.
But 2024 is still a ways away. Right now, the top priority for Republicans is to ignore the noise and continue fighting back against President’s Biden radical agenda, littered with left-wing policy priorities that have no place in mainstream political discourse. Republicans cannot allow Democrats to divide them, not when their opponents are left-wing crazies and the “leader” of that party is one of the worst presidents in U.S. history.
The fact that Biden and other Democrats are going public with their giddiness is downright shocking, given the long list of failures that have taken place under the current administration. Many of those failures have festered for so long that they’re effectively engrained and institutionalized in the collective psyche, with Americans so used to the word “failure” that they risk becoming desensitized to it.
Inflation. Gas prices. Crime. Illegal immigration. Afghanistan. The list goes on and on. Most recently, the Biden administration failed to publicly support the freedom fighters in China, wary of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s response. Even though it’s been clear for years that Xi is a dictator who routinely and violently suppresses his people, President Biden couldn’t find the courage to firmly and unequivocally stand up for the cause of freedom, like freedom is suddenly controversial. And yet he has the nerve to be giddy about Republican politics.
Republicans in Washington, D.C., must make it their mission to expose the failure that is Joe Biden. When Republicans win the popular vote nationally by nearly five percentage points and Biden’s approval rating barely maxes out at 40 percent, there is a popular mandate to call out failure and call for stronger leadership in the nation’s capital. Anything and everything must be on the table for the new Republican-led House of Representatives, including investigations of Hunter Biden and other corrupt Democrats, checks and balances on the Left’s inflationary policies, and concrete policy proposals that can spur economic growth.
Today’s Republican Party needs to be ideas-oriented, but also willing to counter the Left’s aggression with no regrets. Both are possible. What Republicans can’t do is fall into the trap of going on defense, not when working Americans are struggling so much and pocketbook issues are so top of mind. The Democrats responsible need to be held accountable, so American voters know that they cannot make the same 2020 mistake two years from now.
The blueprint is simple: Focus on Biden’s blunders, solve the problems that he created, and reap the rewards in 2024. Democrats won’t be “getting out the popcorn” then.
Ted Harvey serves as chairman of the Committee to Defeat the President.