Florida Democratic Party chairwoman files ethics complaints against three staffers of Governor DeSantis.

Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Files Ethics Complaints Against Gov. DeSantis Staffers

Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Nikki Fried made a bold move on Wednesday by filing ethics complaints against three staffers working for Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL).

Fried’s complaints allege that these staffers engaged in illegal solicitation of campaign contributions from lobbyists. Additionally, they are accused of participating in an “unethical and illegal” solicitation of endorsements for DeSantis’s presidential campaign during meetings with lawmakers regarding the state budget.

“These allegations represent a gross violation of state laws and ethics, and we could not in good conscience ignore them. If true, they are yet another example of Ron abusing his public office for personal gain. Public officials are employed to serve the people of Florida, not line Ron’s pockets,” Fried said in a statement.

Fried, who previously served as the state’s agriculture commissioner, cited reports from NBC News and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune that shed light on these questionable ethical activities committed by the governor’s office.

Corruption Threatens Democracy

Fried expressed her concerns about the potential impact of these actions on democracy, stating, “Any reasonable person could infer from the reporting that our Governor was holding the state budget hostage in exchange for political endorsements and donations — actions that are both unethical and illegal. This corrupt scheme to generate fake support for his failing presidential campaign is both a major threat to our democracy and a sad look into the psyche of a man whose ambitions have driven him and his sycophants to lives of crime.”

Fried took action by filing complaints with the Florida Commission on Ethics and the Florida Elections Commission. The complaints were directed at Chief of Staff James Uthmeier, Legislative Affairs Director Stephanie Kopelousos, and Director of Policy and Budget Chris Spencer.

“The complaints system is designed to help prevent this kind of abuse of power, and the people of Florida deserve swift and just rulings from both commissions. Future elected officials need to know that they can’t intimidate and harass people into getting what they want — Ron could use that reminder as well,” Fried said in a statement.

Governor’s Office Dismisses Complaints

The governor’s office responded to the complaints by dismissing them as politically motivated attacks. Jeremy Redfern, press secretary for the governor, stated, “We know the great work he’s accomplished as governor. If the executive team wants to fundraise, knock doors, or volunteer their free time, more power to them — they have First Amendment rights like every American.”

DeSantis’s Presidential Campaign

DeSantis announced his run for president in May, following his victory over Democrat Charlie Crist in the Florida gubernatorial race. While DeSantis currently ranks second in the Republican presidential primary field, recent polls suggest that former President Donald Trump’s lead may be fading.

Click here to read more from the Washington Examiner.

" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."

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