Massive war chest Florida Governor Ron DeSantis accumulated during his successful re-election bid last year, will catapult him into a significant fundraising lead when he announces his presidential bid in the coming weeks.
Florida’s governor reportedly has about $75 million in a bank account belonging to his state campaign committee. HuffPost.
As of last week, Friends of Ron DeSantis — as his 2022 campaign committee is called — had $74,832,648 in the coffers, according to the Florida Department of Elections.
That’s far more than two potential rivals for the Republican nomination, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
According to Federal Election Commission data, Ms. Haley’s “executive PAC” had only about $2 million in the bank last year, while Mr. Pompeo’s Super PAC had $1.2 million in its coffers.
And while U.S. election law technically prohibits the use of public campaign funds to seek federal office, a recent election ethics case brought by Mr. DeSantis created a loophole through which he could easily transfer that amount to a federal Super PAC that would aligned with his national presidential effort after an evenly divided FEC declined to step in to punish another Republican official who used public funds to run for Congress.
That theoretical DeSantis Super PAC would have $14 million more at its disposal than the combined $61 million under former President Donald Trump’s control Trump through his official 2024 campaign committee, a joint fundraising committee and a related Super PAC run by a former staffer of the twice-impeached ex-president.
And while Mr. Trump has an additional $18 million in the coffers of his own “executive PAC,” those funds are prohibited from being spent on his 2024 presidential effort, but remain available for legal defense and can be spent on various personal expenses. Trump may move to the balance of the committee.
One aide to the Florida Republican governor’s potential challenger said there was “no question” that Mr. DeSantis’ fundraising for the governorship would give him an “advantage” over Mr. Trump, whose fundraising has lagged in the months since he declared himself the official candidate . to reclaim the office that voters stripped him of in November 2020.