The New York Times reports that Fox mogul Rupert Murdoch had quietly hoped that Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin would run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.
According to someone who knows the billionaire’s statements, he has spent the better part of the past two years warning others that Donald Trump, the current frontrunner for the nomination, is wrong for the Republican Party.
Murdoch’s media outlets were initially enthusiastic about Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s campaign, but that support seems to have waned in recent weeks. DeSantis is polling considerably behind Trump as the second-choice candidate. Four months later, Fox News isn’t being relatively as easy on Mr. DeSantis since his campaign failed to catch fire against Mr. Trump instantly.
During the last week, he has faced harsher questions than in the past. He’s grilled him on his weak poll numbers and early campaign difficulties. This was a shocking turn of events for a group that had protected Mr. DeSantis for years while serving in Congress and as governor. Mr. Murdoch’s media empire includes several other publications that have become less supportive.
Mr. DeSantis signed a strict immigration bill into law in May, which was recently challenged in an editorial published in The Wall Street Journal. The governor’s declining popularity and the response to a homophobic video posted by his campaign have been highlighted by the New York Post, which praised him as “DeFuture” on its front page last year.
The hints of doubt from formerly sympathetic conservative megaphones suggest that the media may be reassessing him.
Trump has already expressed frustration at Fox News for what he sees as undue favoritism toward DeSantis earlier this year. Trump has also criticized articles published in The New York Post, calling a lengthy interview with DeSantis in his hometown of Dunedin, Florida, a “puff piece.”