Between staff layoffs and depleting funds, Ron DeSantis' presidential campaign is slowing down before it even really started.
The Florida Governor fired roughly a dozen staffers over the weekend — after just six weeks on the campaign trail. More layoffs are expected in the coming weeks as part of cost-cutting measures, according to Politico.
Sources close to the DeSantis campaign said that the firings are related to its unsustainable spending habits, which were also revealed this weekend when DeSantis filed his campaign fund-raising and spending details from April 1 to June 30.
In his first six weeks, DeSantis raised $19.7 million, with $16.9 coming from contributions of over $200, signaling a reliance on large donors, as well as an absence of grassroots support. The filings also show that the campaign is rapidly spending money, blowing through $7.9 million in just its first six weeks.
One of the top expenses was $1.3 million to travel, primarily made up of private jet rental services. Just over $1 million went to payroll, with around $800,000 delegated for digital fund-raising consulting, media placement, and postage.
DeSantis' “burn rate” is at about 40 percent, which is higher than that of many of his Republican colleagues. Mike Pence's significantly smaller campaign raised just $1.2 million, spending only $74,000.
Donald Trump was reported to have raised $35 million, spending just over half at $17.7 million. Even spending at a similar rate to Trump, DeSantis is over 20 points behind him in a recent poll from Florida Atlantic University.
DeSantis' supporters have begun to express discontent over the mismanaged funds, as well as his poor performance against Trump so far. One donor told NBC: “Yeah, there are people grumbling about it, no doubt. There is an overall sense, including with me, that he just has not ignited the way we thought he would.”
With the first Republican presidential debate approaching on August 23, DeSantis has little time to find his spark.