Jeff DeWit, a politician and businessman, was previously the Arizona State Treasurer. He was also the chair of Donald Trump’s campaign in Arizona in 2016. After being nominated by Trump, he served as chief financial officer at NASA from 2017 until 2020. He then resigned to join Trump’s campaign for 2020. Kari Lake’s support helped him win the election of state GOP chair in 2014. He succeeded Kelli Ward.
What a difference one year can make. DeWit resigned on Wednesday after an audio recording was leaked that showed him offering Kari Lake a financial incentive for her to not run in the U.S. Senate election of 2024. The Daily Mail released audio on Tuesday from a conversation between Lake, DeWit, and Kari Lake in March 2023.
DeWit stated in his resignation letter that the video was a “deceptive technique” and “a selectively edited audio recording.”
Lake’s recording made me realize that I had been set up. I believe that she orchestrated the entire situation to gain control of the state party. It is evident from the recording that her responses were crafted with the knowledge that it was being recorded and that she intended to use it later to portray her as a heroine in her story.
She has been trying to destroy me ever since our conversation in which I suggested that Lake postpone her election and instead aim for the position of governor within two years. The suggestion was made with good intentions, thinking it would benefit her future and the overall strategy of the party.
This morning I was determined that I would fight for my job. A few hours ago I was given an ultimatum by Lake’s team. Resign today, or risk the release of another, more damaging recording. Although I’m not sure what it contains, considering that we have had many open discussions as friends in the past, I decided to avoid taking a risk. I have resigned as Lake asked, in hopes that she will keep her promise to stop her attacks. This will allow me to return to business, which I find more logical than politics.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Statement from Chairman @JeffDeWitAZ
— Arizona Republican Party (@AZGOP) January 24, 2024
Lake, for her part, told KTAR News 92.3 FM “The Mike Broomhead Show”, on Wednesday before DeWit resigned, that the conversation happened at her home while she was packing to attend the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland. DeWit claimed that the conversation took place while Lake was working for his private company.
Lake acknowledged that her relationship with DeWit has been strained since the conversation. She stated that she had called for him to resign before his announcement. She said, “You shouldn’t put someone in that position by having a conversation such as this.” “That is disrespectful, unethical and I have had a very terse relation with him.” He should have resigned long ago.
Lake stated that after the audio was released by Daily Mail on Tuesday evening, “He has to resign.” We cannot have someone who is corrupted and compromised leading the Republican Party.
The Daily Mail also confirmed the authenticity of the tape with two sources, who identified the other speaker to be DeWit.
This type of thing would make me happy to believe it is rare. This seems like the plot of a political drama. Hollywood can’t come up with a plot like this, but the real world provides it.