Former DeSantis Staffers Push Back on ‘Trash’ Politico Hit Piece

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during the welcome segment of the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Fla., February 26, 2021. (Joe Skipper/Reuters)

When Dustin Carmack first met Ron DeSantis at a Heritage Foundation dinner in 2012, he made a couple of early observations: One, that at 34, DeSantis was young for a congressman, and two, that he was articulate and interesting. He gave off the vibe of a frat brother who happened to be “rocking James Madison quotes verbatim off the top of his head,” Carmack said.

Carmack, then a young Heritage Action staffer, came away impressed. He and DeSantis had a “mind meld on policy,” he said. He’d never wanted to work on Capitol Hill, but ended up going to work with

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Ryan Mills is a media reporter at National Review. He previously worked for 14 years as a breaking news reporter, investigative reporter, and editor at newspapers in Florida. Originally from Minnesota, Ryan lives in the Fort Myers area with his wife and two sons.


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