(VitalNews.org) – Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has formally entered the 2024 presidential race by filing with the Federal Election Commission. He is considered to be the strongest Republican rival to Donald Trump, and although he is extremely popular in Florida, his national appeal is yet to be tested at the presidential level.
Although he is considered to be a culturally conservative firebrand, DeSantis faces many questions about his readiness for the national stage. His populist policies on abortion, gender, race, and other issues have gone down well in Florida, but voters in other states don’t know him that well.
Friends and enemies alike have remarked on his apparent desire to avoid unscripted appearances in public. He has also gone out of his way to avoid scrutiny from the media, which may be difficult to the point of being almost impossible as a contender for the presidential election.
DeSantis is a native of Florida whose family roots are in the Midwest. He studied at Yale University and went on to Harvard Law School. He became a Judge Advocate General officer in the Navy and served not only in Iraq but also in the detention camp in Guantanamo Bay.
He first ran for Congress in 2012 and became Governor of Florida in 2019.
As part of his “war on woke”, he signed the Parental Rights in Education bill, which bans classroom instruction or discussion of LGBTQIA+ issues for all grades in Florida public schools. This was called the “Don’t Say Gay” law by his critics.
His most high-profile political fight, however, has been with Disney. Executives of the organization publicly opposed his “Don’t Say Gay” law, and in response, DeSantis seized control of the governing body of Disney World and installed a team who are now threatening to take over park planning and build a state prison on park property.
Some business leaders have condemned the move, saying that it is at odds with a party that espouses small-government conservatism.
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