The head of the Florida Democratic Party filed an ethics complaint against Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Politico reported that the complaint by Nikki Fried, chair of the state Democratic Party, centers on DeSantis' groundwork for a potential presidential campaign. It focuses on whether funds DeSantis' political committee spent on a three-day retreat in February at the Four Seasons Hotel in Palm Beach was an improper gift to DeSantis.
The complaint was filed last week with the Florida Commission on Ethics. It claims the spending by the committee violated Florida law.
The committee, Friends of Ron DeSantis, paid the resort $225,000 toward the cost of the event, according to campaign records reviewed by Politico.
"This is yet another example of Ron DeSantis arrogantly thinking he is above the law. No one is above the law," Fried said. "While Floridians face some of the highest property insurance and mortgage rates in the state's history, DeSantis is hobnobbing with special interest donors and lining his pockets with freebies."
Fried ran for governor in 2022 and was defeated in the Democrat primary by Charlie Crist, a former Florida governor and congressman.
Taryn Fenske, spokesperson for DeSantis, downplayed the complaint, which is similar to one filed earlier this month by a super PAC that supports former President Donald Trump, Politico noted.
"Just like the one from two weeks ago, we'll just add this to the list of frivolous & politically motivated attacks," Fenske tweeted. "Louder for the Dems in the back: It's inappropriate to use ethics complaints for partisan purposes."
Allies of Trump filed a complaint with the state ethics commission accusing DeSantis of violating campaign finance and ethics rules with a shadow run for the White House. DeSantis' office had called it a "frivolous and politically motivated" charge, according to The Associated Press.
The complaint was filed by MAGA Inc., a Trump-supporting super political action committee. It asks the commission to investigate DeSantis for allegedly "leveraging his elected office and breaching his associated duties in a coordinated effort to develop his national profile, enrich himself and his political allies, and influence the national electorate."
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