Ron DeSantis, the Florida Governor, supports the stripping of Disney its 55-year-old special status that allows the entertainment company to operate as an independent government around its Orlando-area theme park.
This is the latest conflict between DeSantis and Disney (DIS), Florida’s largest private employer, over a measure that bans schools from teaching young children about sexual orientation or gender identity.
After DeSantis, a Republican widely seen as a potential 2024 presidential contender, signed the bill into law, the Walt Disney Company wrote in a statement that its “goal” was to get the law repealed or defeated in the courts, per report.
Disney “crossed the line” with that statement, said DeSantis previously, and he went further, suggesting Disney’s “special privileges” could be lifted.
“Disney has alienated a lot of people now. And so the political influence they’re used to wielding, I think has dissipated. And so the question is, why would you want to have special privileges in the law at all? And I don’t think that that we should,” DeSantis said.
Rep. Spencer Roach, a Republican, wrote on Twitter: “Yesterday was the 2nd meeting in a week [with] fellow legislators to discuss a repeal of the 1967 Reedy Creek Improvement Act, which allows Disney to act as its own government. If Disney wants to embrace woke ideology, it seems fitting that they should be regulated by Orange County.”
The 1967 state law established the Reedy Creek Improvement District, giving Disney the power to establish its own government in central Florida.
Unless DeSantis or legislative leaders convene a special session to address it, lawmakers will not be able to repeal the act until they meet again next year, as they recently concluded their legislative business for the year.
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