Introduction: A super PAC supporting Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for the 2024 presidential election, Never Back Down, has halted its door-knocking campaigns in four early voting states, as reported by The New York Post. This strategic shift, involving the closure of field offices in Nevada, California, North Carolina, and Texas, aims to focus efforts on the first three states to vote in the Republican primaries: Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. However, the move seems to overlook Nevada’s decision to move its caucus ahead of South Carolina, making it the third state to vote.
The Reason for Shifting Strategy: Never Back Down, planning to spend $100 million in support of DeSantis’s nomination, cited a desire to concentrate on the initial voting states. Their spokeswoman, Erin Perrine, emphasized the importance of Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina in shaping the conditions for the March states.
Nevada’s Primary Schedule: Despite the strategic change, the super PAC seemingly overlooked Nevada’s GOP decision to schedule its caucus ahead of South Carolina’s primary. Nevada Republicans have set their caucus date for February 8, 2024, while South Carolina’s primary is scheduled for February 24.
Criticism and Response: Karoline Leavitt, a spokeswoman for Make America Great Again Inc., a super PAC supporting former President Donald Trump, criticized Perrine’s statement. Leavitt pointed out that Nevada is indeed one of the first three states to vote in the Republican primaries.
Staff Reduction: Reports suggest that over 250 staff members were employed in the four states before the decision to cease campaigning activities.
DeSantis Campaign Challenges: The DeSantis campaign has faced a challenging summer, marked by numerous layoffs and a change in campaign management amid reports of overspending.
Trump’s Legal Issues: Former President Trump, DeSantis’s main rival for the nomination, is expected to appear in a federal court in Washington, DC, on March 4, a day before Super Tuesday, when 13 states will hold their primaries or caucuses. Trump faces charges related to attempting to overturn his 2020 election defeat to Joe Biden.
Legal Action by Nevada GOP: The Nevada GOP, which supported Trump’s claims of election fraud, has taken legal action against the state legislature for implementing a state-run primary system without specific voting integrity measures.
California’s Rule Change: Perrine also criticized California’s rule change, which allocates all 169 state delegates to the primary candidate with the most votes or a share based on their statewide vote percentage. She referred to this as “Trump-inspired rigging” that hinders grassroots campaigning.
Unfair Processes: Perrine expressed concerns about the fairness and uncertainty of Nevada’s and California’s primary processes, influencing the decision to cease door-knocking campaigns in those states.
Conclusion: Never Back Down’s decision to refocus its campaign efforts on Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina has raised questions, as it overlooked Nevada’s status as one of the first three states to vote. The shift comes amid a challenging period for the DeSantis campaign and ongoing legal issues involving former President Trump.