Miami Mayor Pounces On Ron DeSantis Over 'Personal Vendetta' Against Disney
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez (R) questioned Thursday whether Ron DeSantis has a “personal vendetta” against Disney ― and floated himself as a potential opponent of the Florida governor in the 2024 Republican presidential primary.
“Look, he took an issue that was a winning issue that we all agreed on, which was parental rights for K through third-graders,” said Suarez in an interview with NewsNation’s Blake Burman on Thursday, referring to the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” law that bars schools from even acknowledging LGBTQ people.
“And it looks like now it’s something that spite or maybe potentially a personal vendetta, which has cost the state now potentially 2,000 jobs in a billion-dollar investment,” the mayor continued.
DeSantis’ Disney feud, which began with the company’s criticism of the “Don’t Say Gay” law, continued Thursday as the entertainment giant pulled the plug on a $1 billion expansion in the state. The axed plan was to build an office facility in the state, which had been dubbed a “business-friendly climate” by Disney theme park and consumer products chairman Josh D’Amaro.
But the Florida government has since repeatedly gone after Disney. The company sued DeSantis last month for what it described as “a targeted campaign of government retaliation.”
Suarez likened DeSantis to President Joe Biden, saying the president had also made policy decisions that cost American jobs.
“And you know one thing that he has in common with the president is he hasn’t spent much time in the private sector,” Suarez said of DeSantis. “And I wonder if that influences his thinking on some of this stuff.”
Earlier in the interview, Suarez said that he’s “strongly considering” a presidential bid in 2024. He said he needs to make a decision soon since the first Republican presidential debate will be held in August.
Suarez has a complicated history with DeSantis. He has said he voted in favor of then-Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum in 2018 before eventually voting for the now-governor in 2022, saying he was the “better candidate” in that election.
“We have a professional relationship and I respect him as our governor. I’m always willing to work with him on things that we agree on,” he told Insider in December. “We have very different styles.”
The mayor has distanced himself from DeSantis and former PresidentDonald Trump, both of whom he could face off against in the Republican primaries.
DeSantis is expected to file paperwork next week to launch a 2024 presidential campaign, multipleoutlets reported.