I did not attend the Iowa State Fair this weekend. But even a thousand miles away from pig pens and Republican presidential candidates, I could feel the utter humiliation of a certain Florida man.
That’s the big takeaway from the fairgrounds where Ron DeSantis was repeatedly heckled with pro-Trump chants as he attempted to play the role of an everyday, just-one-of-the-guys Republican. How does a notoriously charmless presidential hopeful achieve this? Flipping burgers and mutilating fresh farm eggs with sticks:
Gov. Ron DeSantis working the Egg on a Stick booth at the Iowa State Fair. pic.twitter.com/ctOzULTan1
— Katie Akin (@katie_akin) August 12, 2023
I would never eat an egg on a stick, and the sight of a man offering one would genuinely shock me. But participating in traditions like “food on a stick” while engaging in requisite small talk with “real people,” something DeSantis reportedly finds painful, is apparently what a candidate whose campaign is in free fall must endure. Were Iowans seduced? Did Iowans succumb to acts of forced intimacy:
Gov. Ron DeSantis walks through a crowd chanting “We love Trump” and “We want Trump” pic.twitter.com/IBjOWcEH1i
— Lalee Ibssa (@LaleeIbssa) August 12, 2023
It appears not.
In fact, those attending the fair were reportedly rapt with excitement over Donald Trump. As the New York Times reports, Trump’s appearance this weekend was a rare moment in the 2024 campaign that featured the two men in the same place—and Trump did not waste the opportunity to make DeSantis’ life hell. Here’s Matt Gaetz, one of several Florida congressmen Trump brought to taunt DeSantis, at the fair:
Trump and his Florida congressional endorsers are at the Pork Tent at the Iowa state fair. Lawmakers already flipping burgers as Trump slowly makes his way through the crowd: pic.twitter.com/R0X8gAWz0J
— Shelby Talcott (@ShelbyTalcott) August 12, 2023
I’ll admit to enjoying these clips of odious grown men psychologically pummeling each other. But any small joy in watching a humiliating weekend for Ron DeSantis vanishes when you remember that a twice-impeached former president facing criminal charges is now all but certain to win the Republican presidential nomination.