Trump Allies Accuse DeSantis of Breaking the Law
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A super PAC aligned with former President Donald Trump is formally filing an ethics complaint accusing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) of violating state laws with his “shadow presidential campaign.”
Make America Great Again Inc. filed a 15-page complaint with the Florida Commission on Ethics on Wednesday morning, asking the commission to investigate DeSantis.
“Governor DeSantis knows, or should know, that his shadow presidential campaign is illegal under federal election law, Florida ethics laws prohibiting illegal gifts from political committees, and Florida ethics laws prohibiting illegal lobbying payments,” the complaint read.
DeSantis hasn’t formally announced his intentions to run for the GOP nomination in the 2024 presidential race, but he is widely expected to throw his hat in the ring. He is considered to be Trump’s biggest competition in the Republican primary, per CNBC.
The complaint specifically points out things that DeSantis has been doing, including visiting several states that are important in the primaries, receiving a significant amount of contributions in his Friends of Ron DeSantis PAC, and signing a lucrative deal for a new book, The Courage to Be Free.
The complaint argues that if the commission finds that DeSantis did violate Florida laws, it should impose the “most severe penalties permitted” — which would include disqualifying him from the ballot.
However, the move faces an uphill battle and is unlikely to be successful. Five of the nine members of the Florida Elections Commission were appointed by DeSantis himself.
The governor’s office dismissed the move, calling it another “politically motivated” attack.
“Adding this to the list of frivolous and politically motivated attacks,” Communications Director Taryn Fenske told CNBC in a statement. “It’s inappropriate to use state ethics complaints for partisan purposes,” she added.