Ron DeSantis Has Stepped Up Social Media Advertising Outside of Florida: Could This Be a Sign of Presidential Ambitions?

Toby Hazlewood

Building his profile out of state?

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While Florida's Governor Ron DeSantis hasn't formally declared himself as a Republican candidate for the 2024 presidential election, he hasn't declared himself out of the running either. On July 7, evidence emerged that suggests he's increased spending on political advertising outside Florida.

Whether this is intended to build his profile, or to raise further donations to add to his sizeable campaign war-chest is not yet clear. But many are speculating that it's a sign that he's thinking beyond re-election to the post of Florida's Governor in November 2022.

Analysis from Reuters showed that the vast majority of spending on social media adverts by the DeSantis campaign organization during January to March 2022 was focused upon Florida (as might be expected). But since then, adverts have been funded across the entire U.S. with no bias towards his home state of Florida.

Growing in popularity across the United States

There have been significant signs that Ron DeSantis is growing in popularity across the U.S. in recent months.

He has topped a number of polls amongst Republican voters, beating former President Donald Trump - news which has hit hard within the Trump camp.

DeSantis has also been singled out as the preferred candidate of high-profile figures including Elon Musk who suggested on Twitter that he felt DeSantis had the best chance of winning. DeSantis responded to this news, stating "I welcome support from African Americans".

The DeSantis fundraising machine

It also emerged on July 7 that DeSantis will attend a major political fundraising event in Utah, later this month. Utah is a Republican heartland, over 2000 miles away from DeSantis' home state of Florida and has consistently selected Republicans over Democrats in presidential elections. In 2020, they favored Trump over Biden by 20 percentage points.

This further demonstrates a possible shift in focus beyond the 2022 gubernatorial election.

Governor Ron DeSantis is well-versed in fundraising by any means possible. It's part of what's equipped his campaigning war-chest with well over $100 million to this point - far more than any of his nearest rivals in the 2022 gubernatorial election.

On the fund-raising website for his political action committee, Governor DeSantis sells t-shirts, beer coolers and other merchandise, including that which is branded for his unofficial theme song 'Sweet Florida', released by the Van Zant Brothers.

He also sells DeSantis branded golf-balls, sold in twos with the packaging emblazoned with the slogan 'Florida's Governor Has A Pair'! It's presumably a reference to his tendency to take bold stances in his leadership of the state.

What happens next?

Whether the increased spending on out-of-state advertising and fundraising outside of Florida is an indicator or Ron DeSantis' political ambitions remains to be seen. But there seems to be a trend currently of state governors that are teasing signs of their presidential ambitions and it is certainly interesting to note. Time will tell what happens!

Would you favor Ron DeSantis as a presidential candidate, or do you feel Donald Trump is the most likely Republican candidate for the White House? Let me know in the comments section below.

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