The campaign of Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis is accusing rival Adam Putnam of giving “up on providing any semblance of honesty to Florida voters,” following claims made by Putnam in a recent television ad and political campaign mailer.
“It’s a shame to see Adam Putnam abandoning his integrity.” said Dave Vasquez, press secretary for DeSantis. “He’s now basing his campaign around blatantly false claims meant to mislead voters.”
The most recent claim by the Putnam campaign first surfaced in the Republican gubernatorial debate earlier this summer and was included in a recent mailer. Putnam accused DeSantis of supporting a proposal to give food stamps to illegal immigrants.
DeSantis says he supported a farm bill that happened to include assistance funding in the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The claim earned Putnam a “Pants on Fire” rating by Politifact Florida.
In a recent ad aired by Putnam’s Florida Grown political committee, Putnam claims DeSantis supported the Fair Tax Act, which would have imposed a 23 percent tax increase. What the Putnam ad didn’t mention is that the Fair Tax Act would have also done away with the federal income tax.
It’s a claim Putnam appeared to make reference to at the Sarasota GOP rally and straw poll on Saturday when he said “candidates running for governor on both sides want to raise our taxes.”
Politifact Florida rated the ad “Mostly False.”
But a spokeswoman for the Putnam campaign denies distorting the facts.
“Since when do we let politicians deny their record? His record in Congress is an indication of what he could do to our state,” said Meredith Beatrice with the Putnam campaign. “D.C. DeSantis three-times cosponsored a bill that would have imposed a new 23 percent tax on everything we buy, robbing seniors and destroying the middle class.
Recent polls have shown DeSantis building momentum after receiving the endorsement of President Donald Trump earlier this summer. Polls released last week by Florida Atlantic University and Mason-Dixon Polling have put him as frontrunner in the race for the GOP nomination. Mason-Dixon had DeSantis up by 12 percent, while the FAU poll showed DeSantis with a 9-point lead.
The DeSantis campaign accuse Putnam of resorting to false attacks because “he’s underwater in every recent poll,”
DeSantis is expected to get another boost Tuesday when Trump is scheduled to attend a rally with DeSantis in Tampa..