Imagine a politician saying no to a journalist’s interview request, and doing it with a one word answer. From Philip Wegmann at realclearwire.com:
On its face, there wasn’t anything unusual about the email that landed last week in the press office of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
“Background interview request from the Washington Post,” read the subject line that summarized the industry-standard process whereby information is shared with reporters under pre-negotiated terms, usually anonymity. When sanctioned by a politician or their team, it is called “going on background” to shape and broaden a story with additional facts and contexts but without direct attribution. When not sanctioned, well, then that is just called leaking.
Either way, Jeremy Redfern wasn’t interested. The DeSantis spokesman wrote back one word: “No.”
A screenshot of the exchange went viral with the consensus in more conservative corners of Twitter being that a liberal rag, albeit the beltway paper of record, had just been owned. The score in their minds? DeSantis: 1, WaPo: 0.
The little episode does underscore a larger, still emerging theme of the expected DeSantis presidential campaign. It isn’t just that the team that didn’t leak in Florida wouldn’t leak in the White House. The implication is that DeSantis would not obsess over what is written about him in news outlets most of his constituents don’t read, because such an obsession is counterproductive to conservative goals. In this way, DeSantis may prove to be the anti-chaos candidate.