Saturday, December 02, 2023


Can you think of few more reasons to reject the nascent Presidential candidacy of Governor RONALD DION DeSANTIS, our former AWOL Koch Brothers Congressman from St. Johns County, who treats constituents and elected officials with disdain and disrespect?

From Vanity Fair: 



His bigoted policies and authoritarian behavior make him just as bad a pick for the top job in Washington.
Ron DeSantis Donald Trump

Ron DeSantis has not (yet) said if he will run for president in 2024, but with approximately two years to go until the election, and with the caveat that about a zillion things can change between now and then, his candidacy appears to be a forgone conclusion. That prospect is exciting to a number of people—namely, his record-setting pack of billionaire donors—but, as it turns out, having the support of, say, Elon Musk does not mean someone should be president. In fact, it’s probably a good indication someone definitely should not be president, and when it comes to DeSantis, that is most certainly the case.

But wait, you say: Wouldn’t DeSantis be a hell of a lot more preferable to send to the White House than Donald Trump? Shouldn’t we be happy about the fact that, at the very least, he doesn’t seem like the type of guy who would Sharpie over a hurricane map to cover his own ass or force people to think about what he gets up to in the bathroom? And the answer is no! We shouldn’t be!

To be clear, this is not an argument in favor of giving Trump, who announced in November that he will run for a third time, a second term; that man should be legally prohibited from coming within 1,000 feet of the Oval Office and it would clearly be a boon for humanity if he was never heard from or seen again. Rather, it’s an argument that DeSantis—who some recent polls show thrashing Trump in a theoretical GOP primary—would be no better and it would be great if people could avoid giving him the top job in Washington, too.

What, exactly, is there to dislike about the guy? Wellllll:

He thinks it’s okay to treat human beings like chattel

Remember when the state of Florida sent a bunch of planes to Texas; lured Venezuelan migrants onto said planes with the promise of housing, jobs, and basic services; told them they were headed for Boston; and then dumped them on the tiny island of Martha’s Vineyard? All so the governor could score some cheap political points with the gang at Fox News and anyone else who thinks it’s cool to treat people from other countries as subhuman? You should, considering it happened quite recently, it was absolutely stomach-churning, and it’s presumably the kind of stunt DeSantis would look forward to regularly engaging in on a mass scale as president.

He’s dangerously anti-science

After three weeks of taking the COVID-19 pandemic seriously by declaring it a public health emergency and ordering a statewide lockdown, DeSantis apparently decided science was for suckers. “We will never do any of these lockdowns again,” he said in April 2020—as thousands of Americans were dying each day—lifting all restrictions on schools, businesses, and government buildings and banning local governments from enforcing their own public health measures, like mask mandates.

After initially telling people to get vaccinated against the virus, he reversed course, refusing to say if he’d gotten a booster shot. He enacted a law prohibiting businesses from requiring proof of vaccination, including in petri dish environments like cruise ships. He withheld pay from school board members requiring masks; held a press conference with a guy who claimed COVID vaccines change your RNA; and offered unvaccinated cops $5,000 to relocate to Florida. In September 2021, he appointed Joseph Ladapo to serve as surgeon general of the state, apparently having appreciated the flurry of op-eds the doctor had written promoting hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin, opposing masking and lockdowns, and questioning the safety of vaccines. Ladapo later recommended that healthy children not get vaccinated against COVID-19, despite the CDC and American Academy of Pediatrics advising they do so and cited what experts said was a deeply flawed study that also recommended men between 18 to 39 not be vaccinated.

In December, DeSantis announced that he’d petitioned the Florida Supreme Court to convene a grand jury to investigate “crimes and wrongdoing” related to COVID-19 vaccines, and suggested in the petition that anyone who recommended people receive the lifesaving vaccine—like the CDC and Joe Biden—must have been financially compensated to do so. That announcement came approximately one month after the Palm Beach Post noted that “the coronavirus has killed more people aged 65 and over in Florida than any other state in the nation” and that “public health experts outside of the state attribute the trend to the DeSantis administration’s counterproductive COVID-19 policies,” which started when “the Governor began weaponizing health care.”

He wants to make it harder for people to vote and had Floridians arrested as part of another one of his political stunts

Like many a Republican, DeSantis is a big proponent of disenfranchising voters, and has signed a raft of laws making it harder for people to cast ballots for their candidates of choice, including ones limiting the use of drop boxes, hampering Floridians’ ability to vote by mail, and preventing the distribution or food or water to voters waiting on long lines. That a judge found such measures “unconstitutional and especially discriminatory toward minority voters,” according to USA Today, did not stop DeSantis from signing a bill this year creating the Office of Election Crimes and Security, and tasking it with investigating alleged voter fraud. During a press conference he held in August to brag about his work cracking down instances of supposed wrongdoing, the governor told reporters that more than a dozen people had been arrested on charges of voting illegally in the 2020 election and warned, “This is the opening salvo.”

As it turned out, the number was 19; the majority of people were Black and thought they were legally allowed to vote. What happened was that DeSantis essentially exploited mass confusion around a Florida amendment that allowed some ex-felons to vote. Body camera footage obtained in October by the Tampa Bay Times showed an officer expressing surprise about the charges against the man he was tasked with handcuffing, and telling someone on the phone: “I’ve never seen these charges before in my entire life.”

He’s anti-free speech, particularly the kind of free speech that says the United States hasn’t always been great for non-white people

Republicans absolutely love to talk about their love of free speech and the First Amendment, but you don’t have to do too much chipping away at that claim to realize what they actually want is for people to only be “free” to say the kinds of things they approve of. Few things embody this contradiction better than DeSantis’s ridiculously named “Stop WOKE Act,” which he signed into law in April and which restricts conversations about race in schools and businesses, and allows students and workers to sue if they believe a classroom lesson or workplace training course caused them to “feel guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress” due to their race. While the bill never uses the phrase “white people,” it was quite clearly drafted with their benefit in mind, and the reason we know this is because DeSantis recently claimed that it’s wrong to teach students that America “was built on stolen land,” the reality of which he denied during an October debate.

In November, a federal judge blocked Florida officials from enforcing a central piece of law, saying it violates the First Amendment and is positively Orwellian. The DeSantis administration has, obviously, vowed to appeal.

He’s waging a war on trans people

In November, at the reported “urging” of DeSantis, the Florida Board of Medicine and the state Board of Osteopathic Medicine voted to prohibit trans minors in Florida from receiving gender-affirming medical care, despite doctors and mental health experts saying it is safe and beneficial for the people who need it. Before that, his administration eliminated Medicaid coverage for transgender care for poor people of any age, and also barred transgender girls from competing in sports. Apparently gunning for the title of “Uniquely Evil Elected Official of the Year,” DeSantis and his surgeon general have said—in official state guidance—that children who identify as trans should not be allowed to wear clothes or use pronouns or names that align with their gender identity.

“Don’t Say Gay”

It’s hard to think of a more terrifying thing that has come out of Florida in recent years than the dystopian, anti-LGBTQ+ legislation formally known as the Parental Rights in Education Act. Dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill by its critics, the legislation was signed into law by DeSantis in March 2022 and prohibits teachers from discussing any gender identity and sexual orientation in kindergarten through third grade. (It also prohibits discussing such topics “in a manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate” through 12th grade.)

Even before the law went into effect, it’d already had a chilling impact throughout the state. Written in what critics say is an intentionally broad manner in order to scare school districts about being sued, one teachers’ union said school officials warned members against wearing clothing with rainbows on them and to get rid of “safe space” stickers or photos of their same-sex spouse.

As Georgetown Law school’s Journal of Gender and the Law noted after DeSantis signed the bill, “according to the text of the statute, if a student is asked to draw a picture of their family and a child draws their two dads and shares their drawing with the class, a parent could sue the school if they feel there was an inappropriate discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity.” Yet despite how absolutely nuts, bigoted, and dangerous that is, DeSantis is not only deeply proud of the law, he’s gone after anyone who’s dared to speak out against it. Which brings us to our next point…

He’s a massive bully

After Disney spoke out against the wildly bigoted “Don’t Say Gay” bill, DeSantis unleashedholy hell on the largest employer in the state for having the temerity to say it didn’t sound like a great idea. Then he signed a bill dissolving Walt Disney World’s special district status as retribution, a move that could punish local Floridians by sending their property taxes through the roof. Which seems like a pretty strange thing for a governor to do, particularly one from a party that talks a big game about things like “cutting taxes” and “free speech,” but it’s important to remember that DeSantis is part of a new breed of conservatives who prioritize “owning the libs” over basically everything else.

Elsewhere in bullying, DeSantis literally bullied the Special Olympics into dropping its vaccine mandate for competition, despite the organization “repeatedly” saying, per ABC News, “that vaccines save lives, particularly in people with intellectual disabilities, who are at high risk for COVID complications and death.” The mandate was dropped after DeSantis threatened the nonprofit with a record $27 million fine.

He’s antiabortion

Prior to the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, DeSantis signed a law banning abortions beginning at 15 weeks of pregnancy with no exceptions for rape or incest. (Before that, abortion had been legal in the state through the end of the second trimester, making it a safe haven for pregnant people living in neighboring states who would travel there for the procedure.) DeSantis has since said he supports further restricting the medical procedure and, after the Supreme Court rolled back Roe, he pledged to expand “pro-life protections.”

He supported Donald Trump until it was no longer politically expedient to do so

DeSantis may be on the outs with the former guy now, but it wasn’t too long ago that he couldn’t get enough of President MAGA. In 2018, he ran one of the world’s most embarrassing political ads featuring him reading “The Art of the Deal” to one of his kids and teaching the other to say “make America great again.” And while he’s avoided going all in on the false claim that the 2020 election was stolen from Trump, he happily backed numerous midterm candidates who regularly made such claims.

He saw “no need” for the Respect for Marriage Act

Saying a bill federalizing gay and interracial marriage rights wasn’t necessary isn’t exactlythe same thing as saying you don’t support gay and interracial marriage rights but…it’s pretty damn close! While DeSantis may not have seen a “need” for Congress to pass the Respect for Marriage Act, people who care about the protections it entails, and have been paying attention, very much did. It’s also notable that DeSantis was more concerned about how the law could put “religious institutions [that don’t believe in same-sex marriage] in difficult spots” than he was about same-sex couples being put in a difficult spot if federal protections unravel. Also, again, this guy banned talking about gay people in schools.

He’s made it harder for protesters to speak out about injustice and easier for anti-justice people to hit protesters with their cars

In April 2021, DeSantis signed an “anti-riot” bill into law that, among other things, grants civil immunity to people who decide to drive their cars into protesters who are blocking a road. The legislation, which was drafted in the wake of 2020’s Black Lives Matter protests, also penalizes local governments that interfere with efforts to stop riots; prevents people accused of rioting from being bailed out of jail until after their first court appearance; and makes it a second-degree felony to destroy a plaque, memorial, painting, flag, or other structures commemorating historical people or events (for instance, Confederate statues).

He has no interest in preventing gun violence

Earlier this year, DeSantis criticized Florida Democrats for trying to hold a special session to address gun violence, claiming it would “kneecap” law-abiding citizens. In December, he said he expects the state legislature to make it legal to carry a gun without a concealed-weapons license in 2023, adding that it is “something that I’ve always supported.” Not surprisingly, he has an “A+” rating from the NRA.

According to people who know him, he’s an awful person and has been for many years

A former college teammate, who simultaneously praised DeSantis’s intelligence, describedhim thusly to The New Yorker: “Ron is the most selfish person I have ever interacted with. He has always loved embarrassing and humiliating people. I’m speaking for others—he was the biggest dick we knew.” We’ll repeat that for emphasis: “He has always loved embarrassing and humiliating people.” Great qualities to have in an elected official!


Anonymous said...

"Freedom for the rich, freedom t-shirts for everyone else...we delivered. Misfeasance...we delivered. Phoney right wing nationalist propaganda...we delivered. Enforcement of current class structure using our police state...we delivered. Soothsaying and grandstanding...we delivered." - Ron DeSanctimonious

Anonymous said...

DeSantis inauguration event came complete with diamond studded dresses, gold laced outfits, caviar fountains, high dollar VIP entry, live music and tigers running around. Meanwhile, him and half his constituents don't have a pot to piss in! What nonsense is this? 25% of the population will be in jail or on some kind of supervision in ten years. God and baby Jesus save us from these phoneys.

Anonymous said...

Vote buying using "first responder bonuses" they delivered!

Anonymous said...

Why would anyone donate money to the DeSantis campaign? He can't run for governor again and he's not got much of a chance in 2024 thanks to Orange Hitler. Why would people give money for nothing? I mean, who does it benefit AT ALL to donate money to the guy? It would be more meaningful if he was actually legally able to spend it on lavish living like many church leaders.😆