TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — As Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis prepares to take the stage at the Republican president primary debate next week, his allies have posted hundreds of pages of internal documents laying out his strategy.

Axiom Strategies, a firm associated with the pro-DeSantis ‘Never Back Down’ super PAC, posted the documents on their website this week. By law, PACs cannot privately strategize with political campaigns, so groups often post this information publicly, albeit on webpages where only the campaign knows to look.

According to a New York Times report, someone unaffiliated with DeSantis or the PAC tipped them off about the Axiom documents. After reaching out to Never Back Down for comment on Thursday, the Times claimed the firm removed “a key memo summarizing the suggested strategy for the debate.”

The memo is archived by the Times on their website. It was dated Aug. 15 and addressed to “Interested Parties” from “NBD,” presumably Never Back Down. It details “four basic must-dos” for DeSantis – who is referred to as “GRD” in all documents – during the debate.

  1. Attack Joe Biden and the media 3-5 times.
  2. State positive vision 2-3 times.
  3. Hammer Vivek Ramaswamy in a response.
  4. Defend Donald Trump in absentia in response to a Chris Christie attack

“NBD” detailed the “Orchestra Pit Theory” posed by late Fox News executive Roger Ailes, which states that a debate participant who meticulously lays out their policy positions will inevitably receive less attention than a candidate who accidentally falls off of the stage.

Potential “orchestra pit moments” identified by DeSantis allies include, “Take a sledge-hammer to Vivek Ramaswamy,” who appears to be gaining ground on DeSantis in some recent polls. The memo also advised DeSantis to take jabs at another candidate rivaling him in the polls – former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

“Defend Trump when Chris Christie attacks him,” the memo states, according to the New York Times. It was advised that DeSantis “[carry] the torch” for Trump and appear sympathetic to him, while capitalizing on his absence from the debate stage.

“Trump isn’t here, so let’s just leave him alone. He’s too weak to defend himself here,” a suggested talking point for DeSantis reads, in part.

Another suggested talking point touches on Trump’s ongoing litigation, calling the indictments and pending criminal trials “distractions” that make it “almost impossible for him to focus on moving the country forward.”

DeSantis allies also suggested he share relatable anecdotes about his family, as part of a recent messaging shift aiming to portray the governor as “the parents’ candidate.” In the memo, DeSantis is advised to “show emotion.”

The documents that remain on the Axiom Strategies website detail arguments and attacks each candidate has made against DeSantis. It was even alleged that low-polling North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum “took a shot at DeSantis” in a campaign announcement video, when he said, “I grew up in a tiny town in North Dakota, ‘woke’ was what you did at 5 a.m. to start the day.”

The most lengthy dossiers discussed DeSantis’ more competitive opponents, like Christie and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, but especially Ramaswamy, whom DeSantis allies published multiple documents about. One document details statements Ramaswamy previously made about abortion and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Axiom Strategies documents also include analyses of polling conducted by WPA Intelligence in the early primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire. The analysis reveals that DeSantis has lost some ground as Republican voters’ second choice amid the crowded primary field.

The DeSantis campaign reportedly did not respond when asked for comment by the New York Times.