In Politico’s Playbook today, which has a high number of subscribers from the media itself, we see the latest attempt to try and harm DeSantis as he continues to increase in popularity on the right as a potential major candidate in 2024. They are calling him a bad boss:
RON DESANTIS is looking ahead to reelection next year and quite possibly a 2024 bid for president — but he’s left behind a trail of former disgruntled staffers and has no long-standing political machine to mount a national campaign, DeSantis vets say.
We talked to a dozen or so onetime aides and consultants to the Florida governor, and they all said the same thing: DeSantis treats staff like expendable widgets. He largely relies on a brain trust of two: himself and his wife, CASEY DESANTIS, a former local TV journalist. Beyond that there are few, if any, “DeSantis people,” as far as political pros are concerned.
Yes, DeSantis recently hired highly regarded operative PHIL COX. But there’s no savant that he’s been through the trenches with, like a KARL ROVE or DAVID AXELROD — let alone an army of loyalists. That’s probably not fatal to his White House prospects, but it can’t help.
Politico isn’t talking to current staffers working for DeSantis to get the lowdown on him. Nope. These are all FORMER and DISGRUNTLED staffers who were probably fired or let go for good reason. And yet this is exactly who Politico runs to in order to dump on DeSantis.
In other words, Politico is dumpster diving to get dirt on DeSantis, just like AP reporters did way back in the day to Sarah Palin. How many reporters did Politico send to Florida for this report?
And because this is in the playbook, expect all the major msm outlets to echo it and begin trashing DeSantis.
Politico goes on to post so-called ‘nuggets’ from these disgruntled former staffers which characterize DeSantis as ruthless, saying he even had a Republican Party official, a woman, fired on the first week she came back from cancer surgery or something. I mean seriously, they want people to believe he’s a monster.
Also, apparently he fires people a lot and has a high turnover rate. Well, maybe he’s got really high standards??
Politico did contact the governor’s office and this is the response they got:
DeSantis’ office didn’t respond directly to these specifics, but called the line of questioning a false narrative. His chief of staff, ADRIAN LUKIS, sent a 5-page document with statements from 14 current and former staffers, consultants and GOP party leaders praising DeSantis, including his former chief of staff SHANE STRUM.
“Throughout my time as Chief of Staff, the Governor empowered me to make sure that everyone who worked for him had the best interests of the state at heart,” Strum wrote. “We didn’t tolerate leakers, and we didn’t tolerate grifters. Fortunately, aside from some individuals we had to part with early in the administration, the Governor has had a strong and loyal team, who he appreciates.”
These statements from the 14 current staffers are pretty much ignored. In the very next paragraph, Politico turns back to the disgruntled staffers:
But many former DeSantis aides we spoke with told a different story. They did not want to be quoted by name because of potential professional repercussions.
“Loyalty and trust, that is not a currency he deals in,” one said. “It’s him and Casey. But everyone else is like a disposable piece of garbage.”
Casey is his wife and the other half of DeSantis’ braintrust that these former staffers hate.
Politico does end on a positive note though after trashing him as a horrible boss…
Say this much for DeSantis: Whatever he’s doing has worked for him so far. In eight years, he’s risen from 34-year-old freshman congressman to governor of a powerhouse state and potential heir apparent to Trump as leader of the Republican Party.
But the leap from running for Congress or governor to seeking the presidency is obviously huge. And DeSantis, at least as it stands now, would not bring a band of loyal staffers to a grueling national campaign.
Rep. MATT GAETZ (R-Fla.), who led his gubernatorial transition, put it this way: “To date, he’s risen in part due to his willingness to bet on himself over the political-industrial complex.”
That’s likely because the political-industrial complex is much like Washington and has a bunch of snakes in it! DeSantis, to me, sounds like he’s much smarter than many of his former political staffers and they hate him for it. They don’t want DeSantis to rely on himself and his wife for his political success, they want him to rely on them! And now they are running to Politico and taking out their anger on him.
For the record, here’s the 5-page document from DeSantis’ current staffers on what they say about him: