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DeSantis bluntly shuts down effort to have Florida taxpayers pay Trump’s legal bills

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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis may have officially endorsed former President Donald Trump in the 2024 race for president, but he is not about to foot his legal bills.

The Republican lawmaker who ended his own bid for president, dropping out of the Republican primary and endorsing the frontrunner on Sunday, reacted to a Republican-led effort to use taxpayer funds in the Sunshine State to help defray the legal costs the former president has racked up.

The governor responded to a post by Politico promoting an article titled, “Some Florida Republicans want taxpayers to pay Trump’s legal bills.”

DeSantis shot back, “But not the Florida Republican who wields the veto pen…”

“State Sen. Ileana Garcia, a Miami Republican who endorsed Trump’s reelection, has filed a bill for this year’s legislative session that could allow the state to hand out up to $5 million to the embattled Republican front-runner for president,” Politico reported.

In a press release, Garcia had contended, “Having a Floridian in the White House is good for our state — and anything we can do to support Florida Presidential candidates, like President Trump, will not only benefit our state, but our nation.”

Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis had agreed.

“From all the decisions the federal government makes with regard to military installations, to roads, to disaster aid — it’s in Florida’s best interest to make sure their champion for the President is allowed a fair shot at the White House without being taken down by some fake witch-hunt,” the Republican said.

But with the clear response from DeSantis, Garcia withdrew the bill.

“This bill was filed on January 5th amidst a crowded primary, including two Florida residents,” she announced. “My concern was the political weaponization against conservative candidates, and while (Patronis) brought me this bill at a time when all candidates were committing to campaign through the primary, one frontrunner now remains, and he can handle himself. I will be withdrawing the bill. SB 1740.”

In his speech announcing his withdrawal from the race and endorsement of his former rival, DeSantis alluded to the legal battles Trump – who lives in Palm Beach, Florida – is facing.

“It’s clear to me that a majority of Republican primary voters want to give Donald Trump another chance,” DeSantis said. “They watched his presidency get stymied by relentless resistance, and they see Democrats using lawfare to this day to attack him.”

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