Mercedes Schneider points out that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis believes he can win over the Republican base by turning stuff he doesn’t like into felonies. With so many new laws on the books that carry criminal penalties, Florida will need more prison cells.

Florida governor, Ron DeSantis, and the Republican supermajority in the Florida House and Senate are passing incredibly extreme, right-wing legislation, which will surely help DeSantis to curry favor with an extreme, right-wing Republican base in order for DeSantis to become Republican nominee for president in 2024….

Imposing felonies seems to be the legislative way in Florida of late; as a result of a new law in January 2023, the state’s teachers, librarians, and other school officials are packing up library books for fear of being charged with a third-degree felony for allowing the public access to non-government-approved books. But freedomand liberty.

The abortion ban cited above imposes possible third-degree felonies for any medical professional who assists, say, a woman who discovers at 10 weeks that her fetus has no skull. According to DeSantis’ law, since this woman’s life is not in danger, she should (must!) carry the pregnancy to term and give birth to a child without a skull (a child with a 5 percent chance of living one full week and no more).

Surely such cruelty is not good for any forthcoming DeSantis-as-Prez campaign.

A man who sneaks into town to sign such a bill into law under cover of darkness surely knows as much….

So, here’s the rub:

In order to get the Republican nomination, DeSantis needs all of this punitive, “felony” legislation. However, in order to win the presidential election, such fascist extremism is DOA.

Republican megadonors are noticing DeSantis’ extremism.

On April 15, 2023, the Financial Times published an article, entitled, “Top Republican Donor Sours on Florida Governor’s Stance on Social Issues.” From the article:

Top Republican donor Thomas Peterffy [worth $26B] is halting plans to help finance the US presidential bid of Florida governor Ron DeSantis due to his extreme positions on social issues. 

“I have put myself on hold,” the billionaire told the Financial Times. 

“Because of his stance on abortion and book banning . . . myself, and a bunch of friends, are holding our powder dry.” …

In January, Peterffy told the FT that he was a fan of DeSantis and was “looking forward” to backing a presidential bid by the governor.

But now, he says: “I am more reluctant to back him. We are waiting to see who among the primary candidates is most likely to be able to win the general, and then put all of our firepower behind them.”

Ahh, the DeSantis quandary: How to sell out to the base and also win the general election?

Might be a good idea to sign into law Florida legislation that does not include the words, “third-degree felony.”