Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ popularity is growing among Latinos. The hike is causing pollsters to speculate he could become the first Republican governor to win the historically blue-voting Miami-Dade County in two decades.
A report from NBC News said, “Florida Democrats are fretting” over DeSantis’ chances because he is an “outlier” among Republican governors in the South Florida county that is over 70 percent Hispanic.
“DeSantis overperforms here in a way that you don’t tend to see Republican candidates perform elsewhere with Hispanics,” Democratic consultant and pollster Fernand Amandi told NBC.
In his contest against former Republican Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, DeSantis has raised over $100 million and is currently leading in the polls.
According to experts, many Latinos favor DeSantis’ cocky demeanor and approve of some of his policies.
“The key takeaway that I hear from Hispanics over and over again is some variation of ‘he has cojones,’” Republican strategist Giancarlo Sopo told NBC.
Helen Aguirre Ferré, executive director of Florida’s Republican Party, added many Hispanics like a leader who “is unafraid to make decisions, even though it may go against the grain of the establishment.”
On social media, DeSantis has recently been bragging about what he says are the outcomes of some of his decisions, including not mandating a COVID-19 vaccine, not closing the state for business and not closing schools during the height of the pandemic have had on the state.
“We kept schools open in 2020, and today’s NAEP results once again prove that we made the right decision. In Florida, adjusted for demographics, 4th grade students are #1 in both Reading and Math,” DeSantis tweeted on Oct. 24.
“He’s a common-sense guy, he’s a conservative and the financial policies he has put in place have been one of the most favorable policies to make Florida a place where businesses can succeed,” “Puerto Rican migrant Luis Figueroa said of DeSantis.
However, not all Latinos are DeSantis fans.
“So many of us have had to flee from our home country because of a breakdown in the rule of law, whether it be a left-wing dictatorship or a right-wing dictatorship,” Cuban American David Enriquez said. “DeSantis has taken on ‘the big lie,’ which I think is, in the short run, one of the greatest threats to American democracy.”
PHOTO: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis attends a press conference Sept. 7, 2022, in Miami (AP/Rebecca Blackwell) / Cubans hang Cuban flags over the windows of Yunior Garcia Aguilera’s home in an attempt to stop him from communicating with the outside, in Havana, Cuba, Nov. 14, 2021. (AP/Ramon Epinosa)