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Donald Trump's record on LGBTQ+ issues may make it more difficult for him to take on Ron DeSantis

In the months leading up to Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign announcement, a lot of people couldn’t help but notice that Donald Trump and his team and allies were attacking DeSantis from the Left. It wasn’t exactly a surprising development, but it’s nonetheless been fascinating to watch it unfold.

And particularly now that DeSantis is officially in the presidential race, it’s going to be fascinating to watch how Team Trump is going to go after DeSantis and try to court would-be DeSantis voters.

Given DeSantis’ outspoken opposition to radical LGBTQ+ activism and Florida’s laws that go along with that, I can’t help but wonder if Team Trump will dust off this old merchandise and start selling it again ahead of the primary election:

Back when Trump was running for president the last time as well as in 2016, he made a very big deal out of being pro-LGBTQ+. And there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, if he really does feel that way. But he’s got a decision to make when it comes to 2024. Is he still going to try to capitalize on being pro-LGBTQ+ in the current climate in which Republican and conservatives are not just condemning radical LGBTQ+ activism but boycotting businesses over it? Or is he going to reject his past support for LGBTQ+ and not only risk alienating LGBTQ+ MAGA Republicans who are still out there but also effectively admit that his nemesis Ron DeSantis’ approach to LGBTQ+ activism is a winning one?

And what are Donald Trump’s supporters going to think about either of those possibilities? Trump has effectively backed himself into an ideological corner now and stands to lose either way.

That’s an important point, too. Trump’s diehard supporters have backed themselves into a corner, too. If they let Trump off the hook for pandering to LGBTQ+ voters, it’s going to be a lot more difficult for them to take issue with Ron DeSantis’ consistency on this particular issue. And if they don’t let Trump off the hook, well, they’ll have to choose between voting for someone else or just not voting altogether.

To be clear, given how ride-or-die MAGA has dealt with Trump’s contradictions in the past, one outcome is far more likely:

If the issue of Trump’s LGBTQ+ support does become a sticking point, it’s unlikely to be much of a sticking point for his most ardent defenders. Still, I’m interested in seeing how all this plays out. It seems like Trump’s supporters were pretty unified until he started going after Ron DeSantis. And then the cracks in the foundation started to form and grow.

What else is going to “resurface” now about Trump now that he’s got Ron DeSantis in his crosshairs?



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