Ethics complaint filed against DeSantis over private jet travel

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks during an event on his nationwide book tour at Adventure Outdoors, the largest gun store in the country, on March 30, 2023 in Smyrna, Georgia.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis speaks during an event on his nationwide book tour at Adventure Outdoors, the largest gun store in the country, on March 30, 2023 in Smyrna, Georgia.
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A nonprofit government watchdog group is asking the Florida Commission on Ethics to investigate whether Gov. Ron DeSantis failed to properly disclose air travel on private jets as personal gifts.

The complaint filed by the nonpartisan, Washington, D.C.-based Campaign Legal Center is based on a New York Times article from May that reported a newly-formed nonprofit, And To The Republic, arranged to fly DeSantis to nearly a dozen speaking events in at least eight states as the governor laid the groundwork for a presidential bid.

And To the Republic Executive Director Tori Sachs "would not say how much was spent on the flights or who paid for them," according to the Times article.

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"ATTR has acknowledged that travel arrangements made by the nonprofit on behalf of Governor DeSantis were not a political contribution," the complaint states. "No publicly available evidence indicates that these trips were related to his official role as Florida’s governor."

State officials must disclose gifts of more than $100 quarterly.

"Governor DeSantis had up until Friday, June 30 to disclose ATTR’s travel gifts," the complaint states. "No gift disclosure statement from the governor is on the Commission’s website as of July 5th of this year."

DeSantis recently signed into law shielding his travel records from public disclosure.

DeSantis spokesman Jeremy Redfern called the ethics complaint "as transparently frivolous as the Campaign Legal Center is transparently partisan."

"We look forward to a fast dismissal," he added.

This is the third complaint filed against DeSantis or his political campaign by the Campaign Legal Center, which also has alleged that a Canadian hedge fund gave DeSantis' political operation illegal campaign contributions and that a transfer of $82.5 million from his state political committee to a federal committee is illegal.

The previous two complaints were filed with the Federal Election Commission.

This article originally appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Watchdog group asks for ethics investigation of DeSantis' jet travel