Donald Trump is a master of branding his political opponents with demeaning nicknames. In the 2016 presidential primaries he decimated the field of over a dozen Republicans by christening them with nicknames that captured their biggest flaws: Lying Ted Cruz, Little Marco, Low-energy Jeb …
There is only one potential Republican challenger who makes Trump wet his diapers in fear, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Even though DeSantis hasn’t announced that he’s running, Trump is already trying out belittling monikers:
At a MAGA rally in November he debuted his first nickname for DeSantis, “Ron DeSanctimonius”, but that landed with a thud. In February Trump called DeSantis a “RINO Globalist” during a rant on Truth Social, the word “globalist” which alludes to conspiracy theory about a cabal of elite Jewish individuals who secretly control the world, will resonate with his base, but I don’t that the clunky appellation will catch on.
According to the New York Times, Trump has recently been referring in private to DeSantis as “Meatball Ron.” That one also strikes me as a loser, that fails to capture the essence of DeSantis.
DeSantis is Trump’s strongest challenger, and without a denigrating sobriquet to hurl at the governor of Florida, the nicknamer-in-chief is ill-equipped to engage in battle with him.