CEO of DeSantis-backing super PAC ‘Never Back Down’ resigns after allies’ clash

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By Carina

The CEO of Never Back Down, a leading super PAC supporting Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ 2024 presidential bid, has resigned amidst internal strife and declining poll numbers for DeSantis.

Chris Jankowski announced his resignation following a tumultuous strategy meeting and concerns about the effectiveness of the super PAC’s efforts.

Jankowski resigns after heated political meeting

Jankowski’s departure was first reported by the New York Times.

It followed a contentious Never Back Down meeting to address Nikki Haley’s increasing popularity. During this meeting, a confrontation nearly erupted between board member Scott Wagner and political consultant Jeff Roe.

Internal conflict and frustration in DeSantis’ super PAC

The tension at this meeting reflects deeper issues within the super PAC, as Wagner reportedly had to be physically stopped from attacking Roe, founder of Axiom Strategies.

The situation with Never Back Down has reportedly frustrated Ron DeSantis and his wife, Casey.

DeSantis’ super PAC halts Iowa ads due to Backlash

This dissatisfaction stems partly from the perception that the super PAC’s advertising efforts in Iowa are backfiring.

As a result, Never Back Down has halted its Iowa ad campaign amid concerns that its ads were more damaging than helpful to DeSantis’ campaign.

DeSantis launches new super PAC, Fight Right Inc. amid campaign struggles

In response to these challenges, a new super PAC aligned with DeSantis, Fight Right Inc., has been established.

With an initial funding of $1 million from Never Back Down, Fight Right Inc. has already begun its activities, launching attack ads in Iowa that draw comparisons between Nikki Haley and Hillary Clinton.

Haley surges in polls, pressure intensifies for DeSantis’ campaign

Haley’s rise in the polls adds to the urgency for DeSantis’ campaign.

She currently leads DeSantis in New Hampshire by 11 points and South Carolina by over 8 points, per RealClearPolitics averages.

Although DeSantis remains second in Iowa, buoyed by Governor Kim Reynolds’s endorsement and evangelical leader Bob Vander Plaats, he trails Donald Trump by a substantial margin and is only narrowly ahead of Haley.

Emerson Poll: Trump widens lead, Haley overtakes DeSantis

An Emerson College poll released Wednesday underscores these challenges. It shows Trump extending his national lead to 64%, an increase of five points since the last month.

Haley, with 9%, now surpasses DeSantis, who is at 8%. This marks a shift from last month when Haley and DeSantis were tied.

Jankowski resigns, expresses support for DeSantis despite campaign struggles

Jankowski, in his statement, expressed his continued support for DeSantis, saying, “For the future of our country, I support and pray Ron DeSantis is our 47th president.”

However, his resignation amidst these challenges reflects the turmoil within DeSantis’ support base and his campaign’s difficulties in a competitive primary field.

Evolving GOP race: Super PACs reshape 2024 election strategies

The developments within Never Back Down and the emergence of Fight Right Inc. highlight the shifting dynamics in the GOP primary race.

As candidates vie for the nomination, strategies and alliances continuously evolve, with super PACs playing a critical role in shaping the political landscape leading up to the 2024 presidential election. 

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