The Facts

  • Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) and his Democratic challenger, former Rep. Charlie Crist, debated topics including abortion, Hurricane Ian, "culture wars," and DeSantis's future political ambitions on Monday in their only public debate to date.

  • The economy and rising inflation were also major points of contention between the two candidates, with DeSantis saying that Pres. Joe Biden and the Democrats were the main cause of economic stress.

The Spin

Republican narrative

It's obvious that Ron DeSantis dominated the debate against Charlie Crist, who could hardly keep up with DeSantis's charismatic style. Crist is having such a hard time raising money for his campaign that he solicited donations from the victims of Hurricane Ian. Simply put, Crist is not a leader, and given DeSantis's comfortable lead in both fundraising and polling, he will likely win an easy victory.

Democratic narrative

Though the odds that Crist will win are slim, he put on a good performance during the debate and rightfully portrayed DeSantis as a Trumpish Republican who is more interested in theatrics and potentially running for president than he is in governing Florida. DeSantis, much like his idol, former Pres. Trump, has consistently compromised the lives of millions of Floridians for his cruel political stunts.

Cynical narrative

This debate was an unfortunate reminder of how ugly the US's political culture has become. DeSantis and Crist traded insults, precooked one-liners, and talking points as each side’s supporters in the audience awkwardly howled in derision of the other candidate and approval of their own.

Nerd narrative

There is a 93% chance that Ron DeSantis will be re-elected as Governor of Florida in 2022, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

Political split



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