Swamp Monsters: Trump vs. DeSantis—the Greatest Show on Earth (or at Least in Florida)
Greg D. Barnett
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8 hours 11 minutes
“Delivering juicy details with unrelenting speed and force” (Jonathan Allen), Swamp Monsters is the wild inside story of how Donald Trump made a star of Ron DeSantis and then set out to destroy him—a struggle for supremacy that has turned Florida into the crucible of the new GOP and of America's future—by “one of the keenest and best-sourced observers of Florida’s political maelstrom” (Rick Wilson).
Ron DeSantis was struggling through Florida’s political wilderness when, in late 2017, Donald Trump extended his hand. Ambitious but charmless, DeSantis was a relatively obscure figure even within his own state’s Republican party, and an unlikely pick for the GOP’s gubernatorial nomination. But when Trump took to Twitter and praised him as “a brilliant young leader” and “a true FIGHTER,” everything changed—for DeSantis, for Florida, and for the country. Today, as Florida governor and a GOP presidential frontrunner, DeSantis sits within striking distance of the Oval Office, and his onetime benefactor has turned into his most formidable opponent. Florida, meanwhile, has mutated from the country’s biggest swing state into the stronghold of the extremist wing of the Republican party—a place where COVID denialism and culture-war antics have been battle-tested, and where the nation’s political future might just be forged.
In Swamp Monsters, veteran Florida journalist and NBC News senior national politics reporter Matt Dixon pulls back the curtain on the titanic clash between a one-time kingmaker and a would-be king, showing how the battle between Trump and DeSantis has escalated, how it might end—and what it will mean for the country.
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