While Trump is under attack, this Republican is making fun, unlike Matt Gaetz - Florida Politics

While Trump is under attack, this Republican is making fun, unlike Matt Gaetz

The Republican challenging freshman U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz in Florida’s 1st Congressional District should put a little more thought into his messaging strategy.

Cris Dosev this week chided President Donald Trump for his infidelities and lack of military service, which would be considered tone deaf for a candidate in nearly any Republican primary, none more so than CD 1 — a Trump plus-40 district.

In response to a Facebook comment saying he was “NOT Donald Trump,” Dosev flipped the script — instead of harried remarks proclaiming his allegiance to the president, he wore it like a badge of honor.

“Thank you for the gracious compliment. I’ve been faithfully married to my wife, my one wife, for the past 32 years and we have raised eight wonderful children. I am also a United States Marine. He is not,” Dosev wrote.

The jab at Trump shows a stark contrast between Dosev and Gaetz, who has been a staunch defender of President Trump during his tenure in Washington – the Panhandle Republican got an invite to ride back to his district aboard Air Force One and speak at a Pensacola rally with the president last year, and just this week he signed onto a letter nominating Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Trump’s approval rating may not be setting the world on fire, but his star is as bright as ever in Northwest Florida. Gaetz support of Trump plays will with the home crowd, and that’s kind of the point of his job – representing the views of his constituency in Washington.

Even if Trump wasn’t doing so hot in CD 1, Dosev’s comments are off the mark.

U.S. Rep. Carlos Curbelo, probably the most vulnerable member of Florida’s congressional delegation, knows how to tastefully put some daylight between himself and the president. Hint: It doesn’t involve personal attacks, it involves taking the lead in policy his district wants.

Love Trump or hate him, if Dosev gets to Congress — and he won’t — he’ll still have to work with the guy to get something done. And that takes at least a modicum of respect.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including Florida Politics and Orlando Rising and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Schorsch is also publisher of INFLUENCE Magazine. For several years, Peter's blog was ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.


  1. Good for him. There’s nothing tasteful about your hero Dumpy Donny, so you’re just sounding desperate.

    Get those knee pads out and go service your sad king.

    1. Oh so I guess that’s going to high?Why don’t you just vote in the Democratic primary.You are as petty as Dosev.

  2. I think you overstate Gaetz’s abilities against this guy. Gaetz has some baggage and was born with a silver spoon, much like Trump. As people sour on Trump, even here, Gaetz will go down the Mueller hole with him. I say good riddance.

  3. So far. all I hear are sour grapes. Get behind our president and you too may be successful. Most people will vote for President Trump’s choice because he already has enough people who are trying to not bring the United States back to her formal glory. Life is too short to spend your days with that black cloud over your heads. I was doing good under President Obama. If you aren’t doing well now. You probably weren’t doing well under President Obama either. At this point. I’d be thinking it’s not the president who is keeping your life not that good. Sorry, you haven’t been making good life choices. It’s not President Trump’s fault. It’s all you. Congratulations.

  4. So, what now, we give the rest of our country’s heritage and resources away, along with everything else we lost during the last administration(s)? At least President Trump is working towards protecting what we have left of The United States of America, and working towards getting back all we lost. Only lemmings would be so blind as to not see that our President works towards growth and strength, unity of countrymen, prosperity, and yes, even world peace across all lines.

  5. Matt is doing a great job like President Trump. All you guys keep up the fight. We need people like your group to keep or party strong. That’s is the Republican party. Thanks.

  6. The last president did not have military experience, and neither did the Clinton’s.

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