Trump campaign alleges Florida taxpayers footing bill for DeSantis ‘campaign travel’

Election 2024 DeSantis Trump
FILE – This combination of the photos shows former President Donald Trump, left, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, right. DeSantis’ allies are gaining confidence in his White House prospects as former President Donald Trump’s legal woes mount. Trump, a 2024 Republican presidential candidate, is facing possible criminal charges in New York, Georgia and Washington. The optimism around DeSantis comes even as a collection of Republican officials and MAGA influencers raise concerns about the Florida governor’s readiness for national stage. (AP Photo/File) Phil Sears, Alex Brandon/AP

Trump campaign alleges Florida taxpayers footing bill for DeSantis ‘campaign travel’

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Former President Donald Trump‘s 2024 campaign blasted Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) for his busy travel schedule, questioning how those trips are funded.

Citing DeSantis’s planned visits to Israel, Georgia, Pennsylvania, New York, Tennessee, Michigan, Ohio, New Hampshire, Utah, and Texas over the coming weeks, the Trump campaign claimed that the Florida governor is using taxpayer funds to make campaign stops.

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“Gov. Ron DeSantis is a full-time candidate for president, and he’s doing it illegally,” Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said in a statement. “DeSantis shouldn’t be forcing Florida taxpayers to foot the bill for this travel. He should have a campaign committee established.”

This month, DeSantis traveled to early primary states, including Iowa, while promoting his book, The Courage to Be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Survival.

The Trump campaign did not specify how much taxpayer dollars it believes DeSantis is spending on his travels. It also alleged DeSantis may be using “donor planes” on his trips, calling that possibility an “in-kind campaign contribution.”

“Serious questions are also being raised about which donor planes DeSantis is flying on for all of this travel,” Cheung continued. “And none of this even touches on the fact that DeSantis is leaving Florida at a pivotal time in the middle of the legislative session.”

Florida’s state legislature, which DeSantis vowed will be the “most productive Legislative Session we have had across the board,” began its session this month. DeSantis has indicated that he will unveil his 2024 plans at some point after the session concludes in May.

One order of business for DeSantis this session is to nix a resign-to-run law that would compel him to step down from office to run for president.

With DeSantis routinely pegged as Trump’s top potential rival in the GOP primary, Trumpworld has needled him for not declaring his candidacy. Two weeks ago, MAGA Inc., a political action committee backing Trump, filed an ethics complaint alleging DeSantis has been waging a “shadow presidential campaign” in a breach of Florida’s laws.

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Trump has hurled a flurry of broadsides at DeSantis, hoping to elicit a response, but DeSantis has largely steered clear of a back-and-forth, although he has taken a few digs at Trump’s character.

The Washington Examiner contacted a DeSantis spokesperson for comment.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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