Ads bashing Ron DeSantis jet use, ‘MAGA field’s extremism’ hit Milwaukee for GOP debate

DeSantis copy
‘Ron DeSantis may have cashed in on his position as Governor to access the finer things in life, but everyday Americans can’t afford the private jet lifestyle he loves to enjoy.’

As Republicans converge on Milwaukee for the first presidential debate, Democrats and an anti-Ron DeSantis PAC are flooding the zone with paid media to welcome them.

The Democratic National Committee (DNC), President Joe Biden’s re-election campaign and DeSantis Watch are running a spate of billboard and digital ads in Cream City blasting the “MAGA field’s extremism” and the “failing economic record” — their words — of Florida’s Governor.

While Donald Trump leads national polling by double digits, much of the attention Wednesday is on DeSantis, who holds a distant second-place spot. Unlike the former President, DeSantis will appear on the debate stage at the Fiserv Forum with seven other GOP candidates.

DeSantis Watch’s digital ads will focus on the Governor’s penchant for private jets and insurance industry-aligned fundraising alongside Florida’s high costs for renters, ailing insurance market and nation-leading inflation.

Ahead of his presidential campaign, the cost of DeSantis’ full-time security and travel increased by nearly 60% to $8.86 million, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

“While the rich get richer under Ron DeSantis and corporate profits skyrocket, working Floridians and seniors can barely afford to keep a roof over their heads and groceries on the table,” DeSantis Watch Communications Director Anders Croy said in a statement.

“Ron DeSantis may have cashed in on his position as Governor to access the finer things in life, but everyday Americans can’t afford the private jet lifestyle he loves to enjoy.”

View one of two similar ads below.

The DNC is running static billboards on Interstate 43, Interstate 794 and Interstate 94; a mobile billboard circling an area between Westover and Haymarket from 3-11 p.m. CDT; and a plane that will fly over Milwaukee from 4-8 p.m. CDT.

They’ll highlight, among other things, Florida’s skyrocketing housing and health care costs, ban on abortions after six weeks of pregnancy and new education laws that have led to book bans and changes to how African American history is taught.

Of the Republican candidates taking the stage, DNC Co-chair Cedric Richmond said, “They’d rather ban books than assault weapons and you will hear them double down on that tomorrow as they continue to appeal to the MAGA base. The real threat — and I think the theme you’ll see tomorrow — is that no one will stand up to the consistent efforts by them to undermine democracy.”

View the DNC ads below.

Biden’s campaign is taking a cheekier tack by leaning into the “Dark Brandon” meme, an ironic response to the coded “Let’s go Brandon” insult of the President that Republicans adopted in late 2021.

The campaign’s “Dark Brandon creative,” consisting of four identically designed pieces featuring Biden’s laser-eyed internet alter ego, will cycle through multiple programmatic billboards within a mile radius of the debate site.

The goal is “slamming the MAGA field’s extremism and drawing a contrast between their out-of-touch agendas and the Biden-(Kamala Harris) administration’s record of delivering for the American people.”

View the Biden campaign ads below.

The first Republican presidential debate airs live on Fox News Wednesday from 9-11 p.m. EDT.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


  • Michael K

    August 23, 2023 at 12:17 pm

    Republicans have a very dark view of America, painted with lies and division.

    At least Democrats are showing some creativity and humor to get their point across.

  • Earl Pitts "Nature Boy" American

    August 23, 2023 at 12:49 pm

    Take this as 100% proof that everything I’ve been telling you about Ron and Casey being the next POTUS along with the First Lady in waiting as totally true.
    Listen Up America:
    1.) The polling is as fake as fake can get and you know it as I, Earl Pitts have explained it to you time and time again.
    2.) Percentage wise the Dook 4 Brains Leftist Media is doing their “kick Desantis job” as ordered. Desantis has been the subject of 80% of the Media’s negative articals and outright lying BS articals for the past 10 months. Yes much more than even Trump.
    3.) To wrap up: Nobody kicks a “Dead Dog” and if Desantis Really was as low in the polling as you Dook 4 Brains Lefty’s have been made to believe than why put all your effort into kicking Desantis each and every day several times every day?
    Thank you America,
    Earl Pitts American

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn