- Former President Obama recently compared a big difference in how the two parties vet candidates.
- While on “Pod Save America,” Obama said DeSantis can win votes via a conservative media ecosystem.
- Obama spoke of John Fetterman’s relatability, while opining that DeSantis’ demeanor was dissimilar.
Former President Barack Obama in a recent interview said that Republican voters might support Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, but questioned if they would “have a great time” interacting with him as he opined on the differences between the nomination processes of GOP and Democratic candidates.
During an episode of “Pod Save America” that was released on Saturday, Obama spoke glowingly of Pennsylvania Democratic Senate nominee John Fetterman before pivoting to the ways in which GOP voters vet politicians running within their party.
Obama said that while Fetterman — who’s locked in a highly consequential Senate race against Republican Mehmet Oz — was able to relate to a wide swath of voters, he said that Republicans don’t always tap candidates who seen as relatable to average voters.
The former president said that most people could interact with Fetterman in a diner and be able to converse with him even if they disagreed with him because the Democratic candidate “cares about people” and has “a point of view that was informed by his real-life experiences.”
“Those qualities don’t seem to always apply to successful Republican candidates,” Obama told hosts Jon Favreau, Dan Pfeiffer, Jon Lovett, and Tommy Vietor, all former Obama staffers. “What’s going on there? I don’t know exactly.”
He continued: “But I suspect, and I’ve talked to you guys about this before … again, it’s the degree to which conservative media just has a lock on how people are presented. The dominant narratives there are so powerful that people will vote for DeSantis even if I’m not sure that they would really have a great time.”
Favreau said: “He does not seem like a lot of fun.”
Obama replied: “Hanging out with that guy.”
Lovett then chimed in and said that DeSantis’ demeanor “would be a problem” if the Republican runs for the White House against former President Donald Trump.
“You just can’t sound like Trump,” Lovett said.
Favreau then poked at DeSantis again, calling him “Trump without the charisma.”
DeSantis is favored to win reelection as Florida’s governor next month and could be a presidential contender in 2024, potentially putting him on a collision course with Trump, who helped jumpstart his 2018 gubernatorial campaign and continues to tease a third White House campaign to supporters.