CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — A high-profile super PAC supporting Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis‘ presidential campaign, faced its third CEO change in less than two weeks, in a reveal that has rattled political observers.
Scott Wagner, a close DeSantis ally, has taken over as chairman and CEO of the super PAC in an interim capacity, succeeding the recently ousted Kristin Davison, according to sources. Wagner’s takeover follows the abrupt departure of Chris Jankowski last month.
The unexpected personnel shifts at Never Back Down have raised eyebrows, considering its hefty financial support from DeSantis’ political account and key donors. The super PAC has significantly influenced DeSantis’ bid for president, often overshadowing the official campaign.
Despite the turmoil, DeSantis is trailing behind former President Donald Trump in national polls and is dealing with a strong challenge from former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley in Iowa and other key states.
Amidst the chaos at Never Back Down, a physical altercation nearly erupted between Wagner and Jeff Roe, the super PAC’s top consultant, underscoring the internal tensions.
DeSantis’ dissatisfaction with the super PAC led to the formation of a second entity, Fight Right, to handle external advertising for his campaign, marking a shift in strategy.
The upheaval comes as DeSantis is marking the completion of a tour of Iowa, that was largely sponsored by Never Back Down, highlighting the apparent influence and stakes of the super PAC in his campaign.
(This article was originally published on NBCNews.com)