MAGAt Republican Governor of Florida Ron DeSantis Credit: Brandon Bell / Getty

Ron DeSantis has hinged his struggling presidential campaign on how he successfully passed a battery of ultraconservative laws in Florida. But what he doesn’t like to mention is the millions of taxpayer dollars he has wasted as courts repeatedly knock those laws down.

The Republican-controlled state legislature has helped DeSantis easily take on some of the right’s favorite culture wars. He gutted abortion rights, LGBTQ protections, and academic freedom. He also has been locked in a bizarre legal back-and-forth with Disney for the past year. He has repeatedly held up these accomplishments as signs of success.

In reality, DeSantis has spent more than $17 million defending his terrible laws in court since he took office. As a result, the state budget for 2023 includes a $15.8 million allotment just to defend his policies.

That allotment includes $6 million for the governor’s office, compared to just $1.6 million last year. The State University System Board of Governors received an extra $2 million to defend DeSantis’s […]

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