Rupert Murdoch and his family, longstanding supporters of Republican Ron DeSantis, are reportedly wavering in their endorsement for the 2024 presidential primary. Disappointment is growing over DeSantis’s campaign hitches, low polling numbers, and failure to challenge Donald Trump. Murdoch, voicing his concerns privately, questions if a DeSantis comeback is even feasible.
According to Rolling Stone, one Fox News insider offered:
“[The Murdoch’s] are transactional and can smell a loser a mile away.”
A senior Fox source echoed this sentiment, reflecting an “understandable worry that we may end up being stuck with Trump anyway.”
These concerns mirror wider apprehensions about Trump’s seeming inevitability as the Republican nominee and DeSantis’s dwindling chances.
DeSantis’s controversial tactics and his cultural-grievance strategy have drawn Murdoch’s criticism. DeSantis’s underperformance is visible, an anonymous source stated:
“And DeSantis is underperforming. Anybody can see that … [and the Murdochs], they’re seeing it, too,”
The DeSantis campaign has faced criticism for a controversial “pride month” video and technical mishaps during its Twitter announcement. These issues caught the attention of the Murdoch family, further adding to their concerns.
Despite the criticisms, which include DeSantis’s comments on the 2016 Trump-Russia investigation, the Murdochs have not abandoned him due to a lack of viable alternatives. Steve Cortes, an advisor to a pro-DeSantis super PAC, acknowledged the formidable challenge of displacing Trump. However, DeSantis remains undeterred, emphasizing a focus on long-term victory rather than current polling trends. With the 2024 primary approaching, the question of his potential resurgence and the Murdochs’ ultimate position becomes increasingly significant.