Florida Gov. DeSantis on revoking Disney's special status: 'Woke ideology' a 'significant' threat

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Florida revoking Disney’s self-governing status marks ‘major shift’ for state: Gov. DeSantis

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis says the state views Disney’s attempt to impose ‘woke ideology’ as a significant threat.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis expanded on the possibility of ending Disney’s self-governing status in response to the company’s pushback on the state’s parental rights bill on “Fox & Friends” Friday.

“Look, there’s policy disputes, and that’s fine,” DeSantis explained, “but when you’re trying to impose a woke ideology on our state, we view that as a significant threat.”

DeSantis’ comments come as Disney has publicly disapproved of a new Florida law which bans discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third-grade classrooms. After sending a company-wide email denouncing the legislation, Disney executives announced it would remove “ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls” from its park greetings.

“This wokeness will destroy this country if we let it run unabated,” DeSantis warned. “So in Florida, we take a very big stand against that.”

The governor confirmed that lawmakers are looking at revoking a 55-year-old law which permits Disney to operate as a separate municipality called Reedy Creek Improvement District, equipped with its own privately-owned and operated police, fire, water and waste departments.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis appears on "Fox & Friends" on Friday, April 1, 2022.

“Under that law, they actually can build their own nuclear power plant,” DeSantis pointed out. “I mean, it’s extraordinary what’s been in there.”

“Six months ago, it would have been unthinkable that [lawmakers] would be willing to reevaluate those special privileges,” DeSantis noted. “I think they are going to do that now, and that’s going to represent a major shift for our state.”

If the law is repealed, Florida’s largest employer will then become regulated by Orange County, one of the few Democrat-run counties in the state.

“We very much support the jobs that are employed at Disney, and then there’s a larger ecosystem of a lot of small businesses in Florida that feed into our theme parks,” DeSantis clarified. 

“But here’s what I would say,” he added, “treating every business the same is what I think you should do.”

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