In some ways, it was a rapid fall from grace. In others, it was a slow decline that took place over many months.
There were several factors that led DeSantis to underperform.
GOP midterm elections hangover was short-lived
One of the big drivers of DeSantis’s candidacy was the disappointment for Republicans from the 2022 elections. Many GOP candidates failed to live up to the hype, leading to an even more Democratic Senate and a much narrower than expected Republican majority in the House.
Many of the underachievers were Trump-endorsed candidates. Moreover, President Joe Biden and Democrats branded the Republicans as Trump-aligned MAGA extremists even though the former president was