All You’re Ever Gonna Be Is Mean

Back in May I wrote about how the beginning of Ron Desantis’ presidential campaign was also the end of his campaign because he is an unlikable and deeply weird creep. Since then, his campaign has foundered, with donors escaping to less off-putting (yet nonetheless losing) primary candidates. In fact, Desantis declared his candidacy just as his favorability rating began to drop:

Even Republican voters have soured on him (and that’s saying a lot, given their tolerance for creeps):

Ron DeSantis’ level of support from Republican primary voters has nearly halved since the end of March, with the decline accelerating over the past week, according to an aggregation of polling figures produced by the RealClearPolitics website.

On March 30, 30.1 percent of GOP primary voters wanted the Florida governor to secure the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, versus just 15.7 percent on August 6. During the same time period, Donald Trump‘s support with the same voters increased, from 45.9 percent to 53.7 percent.

By the way, did you know that he rebooted his campaign a few weeks ago? Mmmhmm.

Faced with the prospect of swirling down the drain, on Wednesday Desantis responded to the critiques of his cringe-worthy campaign by firing Monique Worrell, a democratically-elected state attorney, who also a Democrat. Desantis gave a list of justifications for his action, all of which have been debunked here as the lies they are.

This isn’t the first democratically-elected Democratic state attorney that Desantis has fired, either. Last August he fired Andrew Warren on some equally trumped-up charges.

But there is something that connects Worrell and Warren in addition to their positions and political affiliation:  they both signed statements offered by Fair and Just Prosecution, a group dedicated to reforming the criminal justice system.

In June 2021, Worrell signed a pledge, sponsored by a nationwide organization that advocates for criminal justice reform, that says prosecutors would use “our settled discretion and limited resources” to avoid criminalizing people who seek gender-affirming care. The pledge came as DeSantis was vowing to “root out” liberal prosecutors who he blamed for rising crime rates in some of the country’s cities.

Desantis cited Warren’s signing the 2 statements as justification for his firing:

Warren had initiated police reforms unpopular with some local law enforcement officers, and in the past year signed two statements pledging not to use his office to “criminalize” health care, including prosecuting women who get abortions and people seeking gender-affirming medical treatments.

In announcing the suspension, DeSantis excoriated Warren for being a “woke” prosecutor more interested in social justice than in enforcing the law. He warned of a “pathogen” spreading in U.S. cities — progressive prosecutors trying to reduce incarceration rates they see as overly punitive and that disproportionately affect people of color. He said prosecutors like Warren have caused “catastrophic results” in other states.

It’s chilling to see a governor fire elected officials who then have no recourse to regain their seat until the next election cycle. But the part that really chilled me was the fact that it was a statement about protecting women seeking abortions and trans people seeking gender affirming care which prompted Desantis to talk about a “pathogen”. That’s the language of genocide.

I don’t fear what Desantis would do as the Republican presidential nominee as much as I fear what he’s going to do to vulnerable people as he falls into the dustbin of history.

Taylor knows what I’m talking about: