Trump Sides With Disney in Its War With DeSantis

(AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

Donald Trump was elected president of the United States in 2016 because he was twice the politician Hillary Clinton was. And if he wins the GOP nomination in 2024 it will be because he’s twice the politician Ron DeSantis is.


Last year, the Florida governor picked a fight with the Walt Disney Corporation after the company unfairly criticized the Parents Rights in Education bill — mislabeled deliberately by the left as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill. He won that fight going away when he pulled Disney’s special privileges that allowed it to govern itself and get a break in taxes. DeSantis was roundly cheered for that move.

But Disney fought back. They clawed back some of the power they had relinquished in February and tried to make an end run around DeSantis by getting the Reedy Creek Board to transfer much of its power they had retained to Disney before DeSantis’s hand-picked board was able to take over.

DeSantis tried some Trumpian name-calling and threats — to no avail.

Wall Street Journal:

Disney responded by announcing that it will host the largest LGBTQ+ conference in the world at its Orlando resort, which may not endear it to parents who are dismayed by its aggressive promotion of woke culture. So now Mr. DeSantis is escalating the feud and threatening to set up a rival state amusement park or even a prison next to the Magic Kingdom.

Nobody emerges from this looking good. Mr. DeSantis is escalating a feud with a business that risks alienating moderate and independent voters who otherwise support Florida’s sex-education law and his good policies such as school-choice expansion. CEO Robert Iger risks further damage to Disney’s Florida assets when its stock price is in the tank. Both would benefit from settling the dispute.


As for Donald Trump, he saw DeSantis’s vulnerabilities and pounced.

“Disney’s next move will be the announcement that no more money will be invested in Florida because of the Governor,” Mr. Trump wrote on Truth Social. “In fact, they could even announce a slow withdrawal or sale of certain properties, or the whole thing. Watch! That would be a killer. In the meantime, this is all so unnecessary, a political STUNT!”

Disney is unlikely to pull out of Florida — something DeSantis knew when he initially tried to take their special privileges away. But you might note the heavy irony of Trump accusing DeSantis of pulling a “political stunt.” The stunt master speaks.

It’s not really important to Trump who wins the tussle between Disney and DeSantis, but he believes that DeSantis miscalculated and is now allowing Disney to make him eat it. And Donald Trump is piling on, turning what was a bad stretch by DeSantis into a potential campaign killer unless he can right the ship and move on.


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