Former Trump Rival Wants DeSantis To Change Campaign Strategy

Former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is offering advice to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, urging him to adopt a “lean” and “bold” campaign strategy. 

Walker, who ran a promising race for the 2016 Republican nomination before dropping out ahead of the first primary, shared insights from his experience and warned DeSantis against repeating the same mistakes that cost him the race against former President Donald Trump.

Speaking on “America’s Newsroom,” Walker emphasized the need for DeSantis to streamline his campaign and “focus on going lean and going bold.”

“By lean, I mean, even though he had a great second quarter in terms of fundraising, actually even outpaced the Trump campaign, the fact is they’re burning up a fair amount of that money. And part of their challenge going forward is going to be much of that fundraising haul has come from higher-end donors, meaning they either have or will soon hit their maximum,” he explained.

“So it’s a shift. They need to be lean and at the same time, he needs to go bold,” he added.

Drawing from his own campaign experience, Walker highlighted that having a stellar track record as governor alone is insufficient when pitted against a formidable opponent like Trump. To stand out and gain support from primary and caucus voters, the former governor believes that DeSantis needs to step forward with bold ideas. 

These ideas will not only resonate with voters and help him in the polls but also “help him with the fundraising at the lower-dollar level,” according to Walker.

Walker’s comments come in the wake of reports that DeSantis has downsized his campaign staff due to financial pressures and a decline in poll numbers. 

While DeSantis had initially outpaced Walker in fundraising and generated a lot of hype leading up to his official bid announcement, current polls indicate that Trump maintains a commanding lead in the race for the GOP presidential nomination. Meanwhile, DeSantis’ Republican support continues to dip, leading to speculations that DeSantis’ candidacy might be headed for the rocks, like Walker’s.

Before now, Walker had expressed optimism about DeSantis’ chances, stating that they were likely better than his own prospects during the 2016 race. In a February interview with NBC News, Walker stated that “DeSantis is in a good position.”

Addressing Trump’s candidacy at the time, Walker acknowledged that underestimating him would be a mistake. However, he also noted that Trump’s former status as a fresh outsider, which supposedly played a significant role in his 2016 victory, may not hold the same allure for voters this time around.

In his words: “I wouldn’t write him off, but he’s not the new, completely different outsider that he was in 2016 that all of us were not able to overcome.”