As Ron DeSantis starts touting his new book, it’s a great time to take a look back to the first book he authored, Dreams From Our Founding Fathers, before his first congressional campaign where he gave a window into his ideology. In his book, he laid out his extreme policy visions, dabbled with fringe conspiracies, heaped praise on the Tea Party movement, and railed against Medicare and Social Security.
As a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus, DeSantis’s embrace of the Tea Party in his first book should come as no surprise.
P. 436-437 (e-book): “If anything, the fact that the tea party’s focus on the country’s founding principles represented a peculiar addition to modern political discourse demonstrates that the nation’s ruling class has not been faithful to such principles.”
P. 439 (e-book): “To activists such as Tea Party Patriots co-founder Mark Meckler, this focus on the Constitution ‘shows the extraordinary times now. Regular people all across the country are focused on the Constitution, and the message was sent to Congress we want them to do the same.’ Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and Krissah Thompson characterized this newfound fidelity to the Constitution as ‘the tea party-ization of Congress.’”
DeSantis chastised Republicans for adding prescription drug coverage to Medicare and praised Paul Ryan’s plans to make cuts to Medicare and Social Security.
P. 385 (e-book): “Other than the case of welfare entitlement, Republicans have, if anything enhanced the welfare state through programs such as the addition of a prescription drug entitlement to Medicare, which was passed in a Republican Congress in 2003 and signed into law by George W. Bush. And even those Republicans most ambitious about reigning in federal spending, such as Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, have advocated changes that modernize but maintain the social safety net.”
Parroting similar extreme conspiracy theories Donald Trump was at the time, DeSantis obsessed over President Barack Obama’s name and background.
P. 407 (e-book): “Obama called attention to his own Muslim roots, hoping to connect with the people of the Muslim world. During the presidential campaign of 2008, the mention of Obama’s middle name of ‘Hussein’ was considered to be outside the bounds of political decency…Once Obama was in office, though, he highlighted the fact that he was ‘an African-American with the name Barack Hussein Obama’ as a way of endearing the United States with Muslims throughout the world.”
P. 407 (e-book): “The notion seemed to be that, as the son of a Kenyan, as a former resident of Indonesia, as the bearer of a Muslim middle name, and as the proponent of a post- American foreign policy, Obama, as an individual, represented an effective vehicle for achieving better relations with the Muslim world”
P. 428 (e-book): “Obama’s attempt to ingratiate himself with predominantly Muslim countries by showcasing his father’s Muslim roots and his middle name of Hussein was anything but a sound approach to diplomatic relations.”
DeSantis repeatedly slammed the Affordable Care Act as being unnecessary, unconstitutional, and “major social welfare.” More than 35 million people now receive health care coverage related to the ACA.
P. 177 (e-book): “It is one thing for a left-of- center legislator to think that the benefits of the federal health care overhaul will be worth the added stress on the budget; it is quite another to believe that the federal entitlement will relieve that stress.”
P. 371 (e-book): “[The health care system] was by no means the most pressing issue in the minds of the American public…”
P. 427 (e-book): “At the same time, Obama’s performance in office demonstrated that his primary focus was on effectuating major social welfare programs like his signature health care overhaul…”
P. 462 (e-book): “At least one of these initiatives, the individual health care mandate, represents a violation of the Constitution because it expands the Commerce Clause beyond anything the Founding Fathers would have envisioned.”
A sign of his governorship to come, DeSantis lamented the idea that the ultra-wealthy 1% would pay their fair share in taxes.
P. 469 (e-book): “A reelected Obama will be much more willing to press for a tax policy aimed at equalizeng [sp] outcomes by penalizing success.”
P. 463 (e-book): “After all, during the presidential campaign, he voiced support for raising capital gains tax rates even if it led to less revenue for the government because, essentially, he wanted to punish people who realized capital gains.”
In an audacious level of hypocrisy, DeSantis criticized what he deemed the use of government “power to intimidate private businesses for engaging in speech [they] didn’t like.”
P. 258 (e-book): “Even by ObamaCare standards, this projection of government power was startling—buoyed by a 2,000-plus page colossus that invested vast authority in her office, Kathleen Sebelius used her power to intimidate private businesses for engaging in speech she didn’t like. This illustrates the progressive impulse to centralize authority in bureaucratic arrangements at its apogee.”
DeSantis took issue repeatedly with any reference from President Obama about America’s history with race.
P. 401 (e-book): “‘Obama also habitually called attention to (and in some instances unfairly exaggerated) America’s supposed flaws, even offering unsolicited apologies. He seemed to think that characterizing his country as a deeply flawed giant would endear him to other nations and foreign audiences. Within a week after taking office, he told the Al Arabiya news network that his presidency marked the chance to improve relations between the United States and the Muslim world, suggesting that the tension in the relationship stemmed from the behavior of the United States. ‘We sometimes make mistakes,’ Obama said. ‘We have not been perfect.’ Obama also stressed that ‘we cannot paint with a broad brush a faith as a consequence of the violence that is done in that faith’s name.’”
P. 403-404 (e-book): “And Obama made international news when, in August of 2010, he became the first American president to send a representative from the United States to the annual Hiroshima remembrance ceremony to ‘to express respect for all the victims of World War II.’ Though the American envoy did not speak at the ceremony, his presence, especially when viewed within the context of Obama’s habitual apologies for the United States, represented what the son of Enola Gay pilot Paul Tibbets called ‘an unsaid apology.’ Such a de facto apology served to create a moral equivalence between the actions of imperial Japan and the United States.”
P. 404 (e-book): “At a speech before the Turkish Parliament, Obama invoked what he called ‘our own darker periods of our history’—slavery, segregation and the mistreatment of Native Americans. There existed no need to invoke these issues on foreign soil, and it simply reduced America’s moral authority in the eyes of the rest of the world and provided enemies of the United States with grist for their habitual criticism of America.”