Inside DeSantis’s 2024 launch prep: Donor dinners, a more personal pitch

May 07, 2023

Ron DeSantis is dining with dozens of wealthy fundraisers at the Florida governor’s mansion in Tallahassee this week and next, people familiar with the meetings said. The visits are giving top supporters more face time with the Republican governor as he prepares to launch his presidential campaign following criticism that he’s neglected the personal side of politics. Beyond building relationships with donors, DeSantis’s allies are seeking to introduce him to Republican primary voters on more personal and favorable terms. He also faces an opponent in Trump who has a record of exploiting his opponents’ weaknesses in deeply personal ways. DeSantis’s allies have long expected a campaign launch sometime after the end of the Florida legislative session, which concluded Friday.