Fried and Crist got just $1.6 million between them
On July 25 it emerged that Florida's Governor Ron DeSantis has received $3.35 million in public matching funds from the Florida Department of State - Division of Elections.
The fund apportions $4.9 million between qualifying candidates for the gubernatorial election of 2022, and data reported by the Division of Elections shows that DeSantis received $3.35 million of this money. His Democratic rivals - Charlie Crist and Nikki Fried - received just $1.6 million of matched funding between them.
The conditions for receiving match funding from the State of Florida are outlined on the Division of Elections website, and the amount of money received by each candidate reflects the relative success of their individual fundraising campaigns to-date.
The DeSantis fundraising machine
In April it was reported that DeSantis had accumulated $105 million in his campaign war chest.
Latest estimates suggest that he has now raised over $130 million since the start of 2019. His political fundraising seemingly knows no bounds. His political action committee 'The Friends of Ron DeSantis' has received significant donations from individual Republican donors like CEO of Citadel Investments, Ken Griffin donated $5 million to the DeSantis organization in 2021 alone.
In addition to such support, DeSantis is also well versed in raising small donations from voters wishing to pledge their support. Via his fundraising website, donors can buy anything from DeSantis branded golf balls (in pairs), t-shirts, beer coolers and even baseball cards featuring the governor's own image.
Widening the gulf
That the donations received are now being matched with a higher proportion of state funds than his Democratic challengers, based on their seemingly less-successful campaign fundraising efforts will only widen the gulf between the size of their war chests.
It recently came to light that Ron DeSantis is allocating more money towards social media advertising outside the State of Florida which could raise further money from devoted Republicans wanting to see him reelected. He's also committed to attending large fundraising events in Republican heartland states like Utah in coming weeks which some have interpreted as a further sign of his intention to run for the White House in 2024.
Certainly, a number of polls have suggested that many Republicans would favor DeSantis over Trump as the Republican candidate for the White House. It remains to be seen whether his fundraising prowess will be put to use for a presidential campaign too.
Do you think it's right that Ron DeSantis should receive such a large share of state funds for his political campaign given that he is vastly more successful in fundraising already? Do you think that either of his Democratic challengers stand a chance of winning in the forthcoming election? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.