Florida Democratic Party




Trumpwatch: Is Mike Pence Over Adam Putnam?


With Friends Like These...

Has Mike Pence dropped Adam Putnam?

Six weeks after the New York Times reported that Pence was working behind the scenes for Putnam, a White House official has told CNN that Pence might actually come to Florida to campaign for Putnam's opponent, Ron DeSantis.

Here’s the CNN report:

  • One White House official described the "easy" decision to travel to the state for McMaster, saying, "He was an early and fervent supporter of President Trump's." This official previewed an upcoming schedule for the President that would include "more endorsements and events" now that many of the primaries have occurred.
  • This person said that Trump or Pence would probably be on the trail soon for Ron DeSantis, who is running for governor in Florida; and that there also would be some engagement from Trump with GOP gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner in Pennsylvania.

If true, the report is the latest blow for Putnam after a month of controversy and scandal. Two weeks ago, Bay News 9’s Troy Kinsey reported that some Republicans believed Putnam was "compromised" after it was revealed his Department had approved hundreds of concealed carry permits without completing background checks. Putnam’s mismanagement of the concealed carry system also drew a sharp rebuke from Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz.

A Pence endorsement of DeSantis would be a significant personal loss for Putnam. The two men have a long-standing friendship from when they both served in the U.S. House. During a 2017 visit to Florida, Pence called Putnam an "old friend." And Putnam told the Miami Herald in 2016 that “Mike Pence is a level, steady, consistent guy” and “180 degrees different” from Donald Trump.