WAPO’s Jennifer Rubin Is Right: FL Gov DeSantis Is Like Trump, a Threat to US Democracy

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Both the GOP MAGA Senator Rick Scott and Governor Ron DeSantis have turned the State of Florida into the petrie dish/ epicenter for the future GOP MAGA authoritarian style of government.

Senator Rick Scott, the richest lawmaker in the US Senate, can be said to truly reflect how the GOP dark money/ ALEC type corporate donors, think. For example, in 2022, he was the senator who floated the plan to subject all federal legislation to sunset reviews within 5 years. This would include programs like social security and Medicare. He’s backing the extension of the 2017 tax cuts bill. He has consistently acted in sync with the GOP CEOs’ goals regarding the reduction of taxes on corporations and millionaires, the dismantling of government oversight agencies and the elimination of government social safety net programs.

They would prefer an autocracy style of governing instead of our US democracy, as that would make their very unpopular objectives more attainable.

See: Rick Scott, the nations richest senator, gets millions of dollars richer https://www.floridabulldog.org

But let’s focus the rest of this story on Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis…Jennifer Rubin is right on the money in her 11/21/2022 Washington Post’s opinion piece, “Beware, DeSantis is as much a threat to America as Trump:”

The entire article is a worthwhile read but here’re some excerpts:

“If you believe Florida’s Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis would be a less dangerous presidential candidate than former president Donald Trump, take a moment to consider the recent ruling striking down DeSantis’s “Stop WOKE Act.” That opinion — as well as other rulings against his attempts to inhibit dissent — makes clear that DeSantis is just as willing as Trump to embrace the GOP’s authoritarian element and use state power to punish his enemies.”

“To recap, the Stop WOKE Act — also perversely known as the Individual Freedom Act — is the Orwellian scheme that DeSantis signed into law earlier this year to muzzle the candid discussion of race and racism in classrooms and the workplace. As U.S. District Judge Mark E. Walker explains in his opinion, “The law officially bans professors from expressing disfavored viewpoints in university classrooms while permitting unfettered expression of the opposite viewpoints.” He dryly continued, “Defendants argue that, under this Act, professors enjoy ‘academic freedom’ so long as they express only those viewpoints of which the State approves.”

“The law, for example, bars discussion of the concept that a person “by virtue of his or her race, color, national origin, or sex should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment to achieve diversity, equity, or inclusion.” During oral arguments, when asked if this would bar professors from supporting affirmative action in classroom settings, attorneys for the state government answered, “Your Honor, yes.”

“That is the essence of authoritarianism. DeSantis’s willingness to back such a monstrous violation of free expression should send up warning flags about his commitment to uphold the Constitution.”

“Walker is the same judge who struck down another DeSantis assault on the First Amendment — his vague anti-riot law to quell demonstrations. In that opinion, Walker recalled, “In 1956 and 1961, Florida’s anti-riot laws were used to suppress activities threatening the state’s Jim Crow status quo.” DeSantis apparently considered such efforts commendable.”

“He delights in using state power to demonstrate his contempt for the expression of views he dislikes. This forms the core of his political brand, underscored by his “don’t say gay” law, his statute banning “critical race theory” in schools and his firing of a county prosecutor who criticized his abortion policies. DeSantis has also regularly flexed his power as governor: excluding media from events, taking public proceedings behind closed doors (including the selection of the University of Florida’s president) and exacting revenge on supposedly woke corporations such as Disney.”

Jennifer Rubin didn’t cover the extensive list of all of the GOP MAGA Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis Castro-lite authoritarian actions.

She didn’t include:

How Governor Desantis has led the State of Florida to where it has ended up being 3rd in USA for COVID deaths; how he has retaliated against the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team for posting tweets calling for gun safety laws following the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas; how he has banned even math textbooks in classrooms;” how during a public appearance, he had admonished High School students located behind him on stage as props for wearing masks; how he had ordered Venezuelan asylum seekers in Texas to be relocated by air to Martha’s Vineyard; how he had directed police to round up folks who’d allegedly voted illegally, but the cases were all dismissed by a Miami judge; how he had personally redrawn Florida’s redistricting maps in 2022 to be extremely favorable to Republican Party candidates and how his redistricting map wiped away half of the state’s Black-dominated congressional districts, dramatically curtailing Black voting power in what used to be considered, a “swing state.”

See: DeSantis’s Education Department Bans 54 Math Books/ truthout.org

I forgot to mention how the Castro-lite FL Governor Ron DeSantis was party to an ad, depicting him as God’s fighter.

Here’re some articles detailing the above points:

As per the 11/7/2022 Peoples article, “Ron DeSantis’ Campaign Ad Says He Was Sent by God to “Take the Arrows” by Amy Eskind:

“Ron DeSantis appears in a new campaign ad in which the Florida governor, a Republican, is described as being sent by God.”

“The ad that piqued the former president has raised a fair amount of controversy. Mimicking a 2013 Super Bowl ad for Ram trucks, “So God Made a Farmer” — which was inspired by a 1978 speech by the late Paul Harvey — the ad for DeSantis says that on the “eighth day” of creation, God needed a “protector,” so God “made a fighter.” That fighter, the ad suggests, is none other than the Florida governor.”

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As per a 5/20/2022 Axios report, “Appeals court reinstates DeSantis redistricting map” by Erin Doherty:

A Florida appeals court reinstated a new congressional map backed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, allowing the controversial new district boundaries to take effect for now.

Driving the news: “Based on a preliminary review, the court has determined there is a high likelihood that the temporary injunction is unlawful, because by awarding a preliminary remedy to the appellees’ on their claim, the order ‘frustrated the status quo, rather than preserved it,'” the appeals court said.

  • “Given the exigency of the circumstances and the need for certainty and continuity as election season approaches, on the court’s own motion, the stay of the temporary injunction is reinstated,” per the ruling.

The other side: The plaintiffs said Friday in a statement that the ruling “does nothing to change the fact that the Governor’s proposed map is a blatantly unconstitutional attack on Black representation in Florida,” CNN reports.

“The big picture: The move comes one week after a circuit judge struck down a portion of DeSantis’s redistricting map, saying “it diminishes African Americans’ ability to elect the representatives of their choice.”

  • “The maps, which DeSantis called “race-neutral,” make it harder for North Florida voters to elect a Black member of Congress in the 5th Congressional District, where nearly half its residents are Black.”
  • “The state appealed Leon County Circuit Judge Layne Smith’s ruling last week, shortly after his decision.”

“What to watch: The case is likely to head to the Florida Supreme Court, per Dave Wasserman, senior editor at The Cook Political Report with Amy Walter.”

Go deeper … Florida judge says DeSantis’ redistricting map is unconstitutional

As per a 10/ 22/2022 report by USA.FACTS.org, Florida coronavirus cases and deaths, “the data shows that Florida has incurred 81,907 COVID related deaths.”

As per a 9/6/2022 Yahoo report based on a Palm Beach Post article by Chris Persaud, “Florida leads nation COVID deaths though cases keep declining:”

“For the third month in a row, Florida logged more COVID-19 deaths than anywhere else in America.”

“The state’s COVID death toll grew by 1,614 people in August, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows. As coronavirus omicron subvariants swept the state this summer, Florida fatalities topped the nation from June – August.’

“It’s also the third summer in a row Florida has been No. 1 for COVID deaths.”

“The state became the national epicenter for the disease in August 2020, after Gov. Ron DeSantis began allowing businesses and public places to reopen. The state again became the COVID fatality capital of America last year in July and August, months after state officials suspended all remaining pandemic restrictions.”


  1. Gronda, this is on point. DeSantis showed us his feathers well before he became governor. Unfortunately, too few were paying attention and the Democrats ran what turned out to be an even more inferior candidate than first advertised. Watching him mismanage my former home state of Florida and gaslight people as he does it is disheartening. The people of Florida deserve better. He has always scared me more than Trump as he is more competent at getting things done than the Mar-a-Lago resident. What has long surprised me about Trump is not his deceitful and bullying (that was a given) manner, but his incompetent and chaotic management. These are the words of conservative reporters, not mine. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Keith,

      You are right. The GOP FL Governor Ron DeSantis will be much worse for the health of our US democracy than the defeated ex-president.

      The only caveat is that he’s not the guy from Mar-a-Lago who is beloved by his cult-like followers comprising at least 30% of the GOP base of voters. All the ex-president has to do is repeat the same threat that he frequently used in 2016. He likes to play chicken by letting the GOP elites know that if they refuse to back him, he’ll take his ardent supporters elsewhere. He’ll share plans to form a 3rd party which would be a suicide pact for both the ex-president and the GOP establishment.

      I hate saying this, but my money is on the defeated GOP MAGA ex-president.

      It’s my opinion that not enough media focus was placed on the Fl governor’s personal touch on redrawing Fl districts that strongly favored republicans. This was after the FL GOP legislature had already drawn a map which was still favorable to GOP election seekers, but it was within reason and defensible. This is how Gov DeSantis was able to manipulate the media into touting how he won in a landslide.

      Hugs, Gronda

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh so true.. I live here and they love him here as much as trump. He is sly like a Fox and much more dangerous…so glad I’m old and won’t be around, I hope too much longer, to see the fall of the US…all because of ignorant people full of hate and vengeance and greed.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Dear Mary Plumbago,

          What’s happening in Florida is depressing. The national press needs to pay more attention to the designated future GOP MAGA star, the FL Governor Ron DeSantis. If the defeated ex-president proved to be a nightmare, his appointed successor will be a permanent horror show, if he succeeds.

          I’ve been feeling that Dems have given up in making inroads in Florida. I don’t want to watch them lay down the gauntlet to see real issues get pushed to the side so that GOP MAGAs can play their culture war games that are often mean spirited and cruel. I blame their rhetoric regarding the gay community for an increase in hate crimes, like what recently happened in Colorado.

          I blame GOP MAGAs for there not being enough done to mitigate harm done due to climate change causing more extreme weather conditions, or the increasing costs for homeowners’ insurance, or the dearth of affordable housing and rising rent costs, overdevelopment without the infrastructure in place to support it, a shortage of teachers, etc.

          Florida is being consigned to mediocrity, when it could offer so much more.

          Hugs, Gronda

          Liked by 1 person


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