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GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis is increasingly using his clout with Republican voters to elevate political allies throughout the state, marking the first real effort to build a political network by a governor with a notoriously small inner circle.

DeSantis has already used one endorsement to scuttle the candidacy of a state lawmaker seeking a Florida Senate seat who likely would have had the backing of his own party’s leadership. The Republican governor is also sending signals he could endorse in two other races where incumbent Republican state representatives, who have the support of state Senate GOP leadership, are running.

DeSantis’ public support has echoes of former President Donald Trump, who has doled out endorsements to his favored candidates but with more mixed results. Read more…