REPORT: Former Staffers Need A Support Group After Working For DeSantis
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and twice-impeached former president Donald Trump have a lot in common: perfectly coiffed, belligerent with the news media, they like to sign things and hold them up for the camera and both have terrible people skills.
According to a new report from Politico, DeSantis treats staffers “like expendable widgets,” instead making most decisions with his wife, Casey. Politico spoke with more than a dozen former aides and consultants to the Republican governor who said that things are so bad, even post-DeSantis employment, that they’ve formed a “support group.”
The group meets regularly to trade war stories about the hardship of working for DeSantis. His mean boss reputation goes back to the days when he was in Congress. Turnover in his office was constant. In three of his five full years in Congress, he ranked in at least the 70th percentile in terms of highest turnover in a House office, according to data compiled by Legistorm. It’s the story with political advisers. In the governor’s office, he has only two staffers who started with him when he was a junior member of Congress.
Some of the horror stories told to Politico about DeSantis’s people skills, which in many ways resemble those of Trump:
Within six months of taking office as governor in 2019, DeSantis fired five staffers. One was a 23-year-old scheduler who had been with him since the start of his gubernatorial race. Shortly after she was fired, a member of his administration was quoted in a Florida blog trashing her performance. Sound familiar?
At the beginning of his administration, DeSantis ordered the leader of the Florida Republican Party to fire a party official who had cancer — on that person’s first week back from surgery.
Also like Trump, DeSantis doesn’t take responsibility for his mistakes. After he went on Fox News in 2018 and implored Florida voters not to “monkey this up” by supporting his African American Democratic opponent for governor, he and his wife chewed out his campaign staff for not cleaning up the mess, according to three former staffers. Shortly after, DeSantis brought in a whole new group of advisers.
“Loyalty and trust, that is not a currency he deals in,” one said. “It’s him and Casey. But everyone else is like a disposable piece of garbage.”