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Can the Financial Savvy of Ron DeSantis’s New Manager Turn His Campaign Around?

2 mins
Updated by Michael Washburn
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In Brief

  • As recently as February, Florida Governor DeSantis was fighting for first place with Trump as a 2024 candidate.
  • Now the Florida governor is in a distant second place in the race to be the Republican nominee for president.
  • DeSantis has fired his campaign manager and replaced him with a former advisor to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
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Not too long ago, the pro-crypto Republican presidential candidate, Ron DeSantis, was closing in on Donald Trump in the polls. Not anymore. 

As recently as February 19, DeSantis was fighting for first place with Trump. But ever since then, the gulf between the Florida Governor and the recently indicted former President has widened. The candidate is one of the most pro-crypto in the race. On July 31, DeSantis vowed to end the government’s war on Bitcoin at a New Hampshire economic policy event. He has also taken a strong stance on CBDCs, banning them in the state of Florida.

The DeSantis Campaign Has Never Looked so Bad

In a bid to reboot his presidential run, DeSantis has brought in James Uthmeier, his longtime chief of staff, to become his new campaign manager. Uthmeier previously headed the governor’s office as DeSantis became a star of the culture war and a genuine threat to his former boss. 

Before becoming chief of staff, Uthmeier served as the governor’s general counsel. He replaces Generra Peck, who served as DeSantis’s campaign manager for his 2022 re-election bid as Florida governor. 

Average polls for the Republican primary.
Source: FiveThirtyEight

The campaign has been in trouble for months. According to FiveThirtyEight, Donald Trump leads DeSantis by a whopping 38 points on average, with Trump at 53% and DeSantis sitting low on 15%.

Uthmeier Will Bring Much-Needed Experience

James Uthmeier will, hopefully, be able to bring some financial savvy to DeSantis’s campaign for Leader of the Free World. He has spent much of his career around powerful figures in the world of finance.

Before signing on with the 44-year-old governor, he served as senior adviser and counsel to Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce in Trump’s cabinet, the number two position on the economy in the United States.

And he may need financial know-how, in a big way. On August 4, the largest donor to a group backing DeSantis’s presidential bid said he may stop funding the candidate. That’s unless he gains significant new donors and takes a more moderate stance. 

On July 25, reports emerged that the DeSantis campaign had fired 40% of its original staff. A reflection of the campaign’s poor financial performance after a wave of big spending in the first few months.

Top crypto platforms in the US | March 2024

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Josh Adams
Josh is a reporter at BeInCrypto. He first worked as a journalist over a decade ago, initially covering music before moving into politics and current affairs. Josh first owned Bitcoin in 2014 and has followed the space ever since. He is particularly interested in Web3 adoption, policy and regulation, CBDCs, privacy, and the future of the metaverse.
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