DeSantis Campaign Plagued By Legal Concerns

In recent months, as DeSantis’s polling ratings in Iowa remained stagnant in late summer and fall, many individuals acquainted with his political network voiced worries about the rhetoric of Never Back Down, the most significant super PAC backing the governor’s candidacy.

The governor was particularly irritated because last month, the organization removed a TV commercial that attacked Nikki Haley, a prominent Republican opponent, for approving the entry of a Chinese company into South Carolina during her tenure as governor. According to numerous sources briefed on the meetings, Never Back Down’s board members, including Floridians with links to the governor, were informed by DeSantis’s team about these messaging issues. Several board members then communicated the desires of the DeSantis team to the super PAC personnel, who were in charge of carrying out the plan, according to the sources.

According to federal law, it is illegal for presidential campaigns and other entities to work together. No federal complaint or lawsuit claiming that DeSantis’ campaign violated any laws has surfaced. Since the Citizens United ruling by the Supreme Court in 2010, when the age of super PACs ended, it has been the norm for campaigns to have ambiguous connections with affiliated outside organizations. The Campaign Legal Center’s Adav Noti expressed his belief that the alleged contact between DeSantis’ staff and the super PAC is excessive. Given federal regulations forbidding cooperation, DeSantis’ team has vehemently disputed that the governor has attempted to influence the network of outside organizations supporting him.

Media research company AdImpact reports that Never Back Down has spent around $43 million on advertisements this year. In contrast, DeSantis has only spent $4.4 million from his official campaign, which he is legally in charge of. The state of Iowa alone has seen almost $16 million in advertising expenditure by Never Back Down.