Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida defended his ongoing fight with Disney at a Saturday event in Iowa, saying Republican critics “subcontract leadership” to the entertainment conglomerate.
“Not everybody liked that. Parents loved it, but some of the left did not like it, the media did not like it, and then there happened to be a business in central Florida some of you may have heard of who didn’t like it, called Disney,” DeSantis, who announced his candidacy on Twitter, said. “But you know, I stand up for the people I represent. I do not subcontract my leadership to a woke company in Burbank, California.”
Disney and the Florida governor have clashed since DeSantis signed parental rights legislation in March 2022 over the company’s opposition. DeSantis also approved legislation that ended Disney’s control over the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which the company reportedly attempted to undermine with last-second agreements, and sued Florida over the legislation that ended the company’s control over the district on April 26.
“You’ve got a lot of Republicans now taking the side of Disney and saying I did the wrong thing, but I can tell you straight up: we stand for the protection of our children,” DeSantis said. “We will do battle against anybody who seeks to rob them of their innocence and on those principles, I will not compromise. Here I stand.”
Former President Donald Trump, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and former Republican Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey have criticized DeSantis over the Disney feud. Haley invited Disney to move its operations to South Carolina in a Fox News interview.
“DeSanctus is being absolutely destroyed by Disney. His original P.R. plan fizzled, so now he’s going back with a new one in order to save face,” Trump posted on Truth Social.
“You shouldn’t be President of the United States if you’re going to get outsmarted by Mickey Mouse,” Ramaswamy tweeted on April 28.
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