The Rising Costs of Protecting Governor Ron DeSantis and His Presidential Campaign

Florida taxpayers have spent a substantial amount of money over the past year to protect Governor Ron DeSantis and his family as he laid the groundwork for his presidential campaign.[0] According to a new state report from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, taxpayers paid $8.8 million to ensure the safety and security of the governor and his family.[1] This amount includes expenses for travel and protective security. The report covers the period from July 1, 2022, to June 30, 2023.[2]

The report reveals that protecting Governor DeSantis alone accounted for $8 million of the total expenditure.[3] This includes $5 million spent on salaried employees and $3 million on travel and other related expenses. An additional $670,000 was allocated to protect Florida’s first lady, Casey DeSantis.[4]

The significant increase in taxpayer funds allocated to the governor’s security and transportation has raised eyebrows. The report highlights that the amount spent on protecting and transporting the DeSantis family has more than doubled over the past year alone, reaching a total of $9.4 million. This rise in expenses can be attributed to Governor DeSantis’s increased travel as he campaigned for key Republican Senate candidates during the 2022 midterms and launched his own presidential bid in May.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is legally mandated to provide protective services to the governor and his family.[2] The report emphasizes Governor DeSantis’s elevated threat profile due to his record as the “most effective conservative governor in American history.” As a result, the department has increased the number of protective agents to ensure the safety of the governor and his family.[0]

In addition to expenses related to the governor’s security, the report also reveals costs for protecting visiting dignitaries.[5] In the 2022-2023 fiscal year, the agency spent $457,000 on security for various dignitaries who visited Florida, including expenses for the governor’s inauguration and the Republican Governor’s Association annual conference.[3]

Overall, the total bill for protecting and transporting Governor DeSantis and his family last year amounted to $9.5 million, a significant increase compared to the previous fiscal year.[6] The report highlights the rising costs associated with the governor’s travel and security detail, which have surged since he began his national political pursuits.[7]

Governor DeSantis’s presidential campaign has gained traction, and he is currently ranked second in the Republican primary, just behind former President Donald Trump.[8] As he continues to campaign and travel the country, the costs of his security and transportation are expected to remain high.

The substantial amount of taxpayer money being spent on the governor’s security has sparked discussions about the allocation of funds and the necessity of such expenses. Critics argue that the increased expenditure is disproportionate and question whether it is justifiable. However, supporters of Governor DeSantis argue that the elevated threat profile and his record as an effective conservative leader warrant the increased security measures.

As the presidential campaign season progresses, it remains to be seen how much more taxpayer money will be allocated to protect Governor DeSantis and his family. The high costs associated with his security and transportation highlight the challenges and expenses that come with running for the highest office in the country.

0. “Ron DeSantis security tab approached $10 million as he prepped presidential run” AOL, 16 Aug. 2023,

1. “FDLE report: Taxpayer cost to protect Gov. Ron DeSantis increased last year” WPBF West Palm Beach, 17 Aug. 2023,

2. “DeSantis’ travel, security cost Florida taxpayers $13 million as he runs for president” Miami Herald, 16 Aug. 2023,

3. “Taxpayer bill for DeSantis’ security, transportation soars to $9.4 million” Orlando Sentinel, 15 Aug. 2023,

4. “Taxpayer-funded security for DeSantis jumped to $8 million as he launched presidential campaign” ABC Action News Tampa Bay, 16 Aug. 2023,

5. “DeSantis security costs jump” The Port St. Joe Star, 16 Aug. 2023,

6. “Gov. Ron DeSantis’ travel, protection expenses soar” WESH 2 Orlando, 15 Aug. 2023,

7. “DeSantis security costs jump” Osceola News-Gazette, 16 Aug. 2023,

8. “DeSantis calls out federal ‘spending binge’ by Republicans and Democrats” Colorado Springs Gazette, 15 Aug. 2023,

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