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Auchter's Art: Testing the conservative waters

Florida governor Ron DeSantis is scheduled to come to Michigan this week to give a speech at Hillsdale College. DeSantis hasn't formally declared his candidacy, but he is very likely going to be a Republican nominee for president, and Hillsdale is something of a traditional spot to test those waters.

The college is generally viewed as a bastion of modern conservatism. It's a private school with a curriculum based on Western heritage as a product of Greco-Roman culture and Christian tradition. It famously eschews all governmental financial support for itself and its students to avoid compromising its principles.

The DeSantis speech will take place after my deadline for this and the cartoon this week. But I imagine his speech went something like this:

"Thank you for inviting me to Michigan even though most of Michigan is in Florida this week on spring break. <laughter> But seriously, it's an honor, and the trip here gave me plenty of time for some reflection. Hillsdale has a well-deserved reputation of living its conservative values, and it's high time I do the same.

For example, purposely turning the power of government against a private business like Disney, threatening them and telling them how to run their company — what was I thinking?

And appointing six of my cronies to the Board of Trustees of New College of Florida so that I could hire and fire whomever I please and mold the school into what I think it should be. I mean, it's a public institution, not my personal possession. That's some pretty obvious government overreach right there!

And then there was the whole thing with parents at one of your charter schools in Florida losing their minds over Michelangelo's David. Man oh man, you were right to call out the cartoonish behavior and pull your support. I apologize for encouraging people to look for the worst in every situation, including confusing classical art with pornography. That's on me!

Please let me just say that I'm sorry, and I promise to be a more consistently thoughtful leader in the future. Thank you."

How'd I do? Is this close to what he said?

John Auchter is a freelance political cartoonist. His views are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Michigan Radio, its management, or its license holder, the University of Michigan.

Since 1995 John has created Michigan-based editorial cartoons for the Grand Rapids Business Journal, the Grand Rapids Press, and MLive Newspapers. His cartoons are currently featured at MichiganPublic.org and are syndicated to newspapers through the Michigan Press Association. John is an active member of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. You can view an archive of his editorial work and other cartoons at Auchtoon.com.
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