A meeting where High-level strategists for Florida governor and presidential candidate Ron DeSantis were supposed to discuss strategy against his rival Nikki Haley nearly got into trouble, according to a report from NBC News.
Sources who spoke to NBC revealed that the near-fight, which occurred last Tuesday, reflected growing tensions within the board of Desantis’ main PAC, Never Back Down. According to a source who was in the room, Never Back Down consultant Jeff Roe nearly got into a fight with Desantis advisor and PAC board member Scott Wagner.
“You have a dick up your ass,” Roe allegedly told Wagner, who responded by demanding that Roe “come here and get it.” Wagner was reportedly restrained by his fellow board members before the two could actually fight. Three DeSantis allies unaffiliated with Never Back Down released a new PAC after the disastrous strategy session.
DeSantis’ campaign, once the great Republican hope of challenging former President Donald Trump’s 2024 candidacy, has not lived up to expectations. Sources told NBC News that the Florida governor, his wife and other prominent campaign members were frustrated with what they saw as a lack of effectiveness on the part of Never Back Down’s leadership, which opened the door for Haley to gain significant ground. in preparation for the primaries.
The new PAC, called Fight Right, reportedly seeks to solve DeSantis’ Haley problem in a way that Never Back Down seemed incapable of doing. The PAC already advertisements released in Iowa, comparing Haley to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The ads insinuate that “Crooked Hillary” is a “role model” for the former South Carolina governor and United Nations ambassador.
The reality is that a new PAC will be able to do little to stop the tide of support for DeSantis from receding. The Florida governor delivered lackluster debate performances, the highlights of which were memes mocking how deeply uncomfortable he seems in his own skin. Trump himself singled out DeSantis as his own campaign’s designated punching bag, and as previously reported by Rolling Stone, had his campaign strategizing how to humiliate DeSantis in every way they could imagine.
With the Iowa caucuses less than two months away, the next few weeks will be decisive for the candidates. In the case of DeSantis, the drop in polls and infighting among his top strategists may have already left things beyond repair.