It has been a cruel summer for Ron DeSantis. Earlier this spring, the Florida governor was within 10 points of Donald Trump in national polls. Today, he trails the former Republican president by 40 points and has been written off by many political insiders and the press.

Many of these same insiders have lots of opinions and hot takes on why DeSantis has failed to launch. But to really understand why DeSantis is struggling — and why Trump is tightening his hold on the nomination — it's important to hear from actual primary voters.

Sarah Longwell has spent the past couple of years talking to Republican voters from across the country and across the ideological spectrum. To be sure, she's not an unbiased observer. As publisher of The Bulwark and a leader in the Republican Accountability Project, she's firmly in the Never-Trump wing of the GOP. But her goal in convening these groups isn't to persuade or provoke. It is to learn how Republicans view the party, their candidates and the political climate.

I talked with her

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