Anti-Trump Republicans seized on Daniel Cameron’s Kentucky gubernatorial defeat to lambast former President Donald Trump. Supporters of Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis also weaponized the loss to argue nobody wants Trump-endorsed candidates now.
Numerous news outlets projected incumbent Democrat Andy Beshear winning reelection Tuesday night. With most votes counted, Beshear led challenger Cameron by over 60,000 votes.
As expected, Democrats gloried in the outcome, particularly alongside the abortion ballot win in Ohio. But anti-Trump GOP voices appeared largely united in animus towards the ex-president.
“Why is the @RonDeSantis crew celebrating Daniel Cameron’s loss?!” Richard Grenell tweeted, noting Cameron would’ve been the first Black GOP Governor since Reconstruction.
“Trump delivers another big LOSS to the GOP. The culture of losing continues…” NeverTrumper Max Twain wrote online.
Pro-DeSantis influencer Chris Nelson exclaimed “NOBODY wants Trump-backed candidates anymore!”
The group Republicans Against Trump jeered that “Everything Trump touches crumbles.” It later added that “Americans are tired of Trump and extreme MAGA Republicans.”
Ex-New Jersey Governor Chris Christie asserted “the GOP losing streak will only end if we ditch Donald Trump.”
A Republican elections site said Trump hadn’t campaigned for Cameron in Kentucky after vowing victory, and his backing didn’t help at all.
“MAGA candidate Daniel Cameron endorsed Trump, and was endorsed by Trump. And he just got crushed in DEEP RED Kentucky,” a DeSantis supporter tweeted. “Trump is toxic. He causes election losses.”
Beshear’s victory came as Republican Governors Association chair Kim Reynolds stumped for DeSantis in Florida — eliciting Trump team gripes.
The reactions expose bitter GOP fractures as the post-Trump period emerges. Detractors insist results like Kentucky signal Trump’s clout is fading as options like DeSantis grow. But Trump allies argue writing him off remains premature given his staunch base.
Isolated state election outcomes allow varied spin in the heated Trump vs DeSantis proxy fight unfolding. Both factions risk exaggerating singular results before decisive 2024 primaries commence.