The fight between the movie giant Disney and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis continues. Disney announced at the end of the week that it will shelve a plan under which new offices will be established in the country, with a total investment of one billion dollars. The new offices in the state were supposed to provide thousands of jobs for Florida residents, with high wages.
This is another step in the company’s fight, which has become a liberal marker, against the “dont say gay” legislation promoted by the governor. DeSantis said in response that it was a “spin”, and that Disney had canceled the project of moving the offices from California to Florida due to financial difficulties within the company.
The fight began in early 2022, when DeSantis sponsored legislation in the state of Florida that proposed banning educational figures from talking to children, starting in kindergarten, about issues related to the gay community and gender. The employees of Disney, which is considered the largest employer in the state of Florida, demanded that the company take a clear position against the law. Finally, the CEO of the company accepted the request, and since then there has been an economic and legal battle between him and the governor.
As a retaliatory measure, Governor DeSantis decided to revoke the extensive powers granted to Disney in its park lands, which, among other things, allowed it to build and operate the facilities without interference. DeSantis appointed his cronies to control the parks area and hoped that this would “deal a blow” to the company. Only Disney got ahead of the governor, and signed a binding arrangement just before the transfer of control – which would allow them freedom of action for decades. DeSantis is free to appoint his own people, but these will have no powers at all.
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DeSantis claimed that this was a prohibited arrangement, and announced that he would legislate against Disney’s arrangement. In response, the company condemned the governor for “political persecution”, and some assess that he is actually interested in the publicized legal battle, just before he announces his participation in the race for the presidency of the United States.