Florida's Top Republicans Are Having the Pettiest of Feuds

Photo: Joe Raedle (Getty Images)

Looks like there’s some trouble in paradise. Sorry, did I say paradise? I meant Florida.

Florida’s newly elected senator and governor—Republicans Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis, respectively—are in a bit of a tiff right now, according to a report from Politico. Per their reporting, Scott, the outgoing governor and a junior member of the Senate, has spent the past couple weeks being his best self, which seems to be an intensely petty man who apparently doesn’t give a fuck about helping his replacement transition into the governorship.

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The spat came to a head on Tuesday when Scott decided to leave DeSantis’ inauguration ceremony early, reportedly prompting DeSantis to excise the part in his speech where he planned to thank his predecessor. It hadn’t helped matters when Scott went ahead and appointed 70 Floridians to government positions without consulting DeSantis the previous Friday. But the early exit and the rushed, last-minute appointments weren’t the lowest blows Scott was willing to dish out.

That moment also came last Friday, when Scott casually mentioned to DeSantis he had planned a little going away party at the governor’s house, nothing major, just 48 of his closest friends, and oh by the way, it’s in two days. (By that time, DeSantis’ entire family, which includes two young kids, had moved into said governor’s house.)

The story itself feels a bit lacking in the necessary mud-slinging that no doubt sprung from this wonderful trifecta of pettiness. Part of that is on Politico’s decision to frame the debacle as setting up a possible 2024 tussle for president between the two men; the outlet also decided to cite psycho Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz, who is Team DeSantis and called Scott’s moves “inconsiderate.” The only real dirt came from an anonymous source that’s identified as a “top supporter” of Marco Rubio and is absolutely in no way definitely Rubio himself, but damn did they pour it:

“I used to think it was Scott’s team, but it’s Scott,” the source said. “They will go out of their way and spend inordinate energy to pick petty squabbles and fight battles that only exist in Scott’s head. No other senator holds an inaugural ball in D.C. But Scott did. He thinks he’s still like a governor. But what he’s going to learn in the U.S. Senate is he’s largely irrelevant as the most junior senator.”

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Florida reporters, please bring me more of this intra-Republican Party messiness and less-to-no 2024 talk, thank you.

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