Ron DeSantis claimed that former Disney CEO Bob Chapek complained to him about the “pressure” he was under from the left to get into the governor’s new education bill that restricts lessons on gender identity.
DeSantis revealed the details of his private conversation with Chapek during the time troubles involving Florida’s education law began in early 2022 in a chapter of his new memoir, ‘The Courage to be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for American Revival. ‘.
The chapter, which was shared with Fox Digital News, says: ‘As the controversy over the parental rights in education bill came to a head, Chapek called me. He didn’t want Disney involved, but he was getting a lot of pressure to speak out against the bill.
“We get pressured all the time,” Chapek told DeSantis, according to the governor’s book. ‘But this time is different. I haven’t seen anything like this before.
On March 9 of last year, the former Disney CEO approached the Florida governor to persuade him not to sign the education bill, incorrectly dubbed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill by its critics.
Ron DeSantis revealed the details of his conversation with Chapek during the time troubles involving Florida’s education law began in early 2022 in a chapter of his new memoir. Pictured above at Palm Beach Atlantic University on February 15
Former Disney CEO Bob Chapek claimed to have expressed “concern” over the passage of the legislation. Pictured above at the premiere of ‘Pinocchio’ at the Walt Disney Studios Main Theatre, California on September 7, 2022
Chapek claimed to have expressed “concern” that if the legislation passed, it “could be used to unfairly target gay, lesbian, non-binary and transgender children and families,” according to FOX 35 Orlando.
While still working at Disney, Chapek claimed to have faced pressure within Disney and from Democrats to take a stand, despite initially being reserved about involving his company.
However, DeSantis warned that Disney should have expected to face a two-day outrage once the bill passed if they decided to stay out of Florida politics.
He wrote that Chapek and Disney “ultimately caved in to pressure from left-wing media and activists and pushed the false narrative against the bill.”
Known formally as the ‘Parental Rights in Education’ bill, it states that ‘instruction in the classroom by school personnel or third parties about sexual orientation or gender identity cannot occur from kindergarten to (third degree)’.
As part of the legislation, public school teachers cannot “encourage classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity at the elementary levels.”
The bill passed the Republican-controlled Florida House of Representatives on February 24 and the state Senate on March 8; it will go into effect on July 1, and all school district plans must be updated by June 2023.
It was reported that Disney had been pushing ideals that were criticized by conservatives, such as imposing messages of gender and sexuality in movies and television shows.
Amid the dispute between DeSantis and Chapek, a new bill would put a state board in charge of governing Reedy Creek, for which Disney has been responsible since 1967.
In the revealed chapter, DeSantis wrote that while Disney had a right to engage in fair activism, Florida had no place to idolize the company by doing so.
He argued that this was especially true “when the company’s activism impacted parental rights and children’s welfare.”
Additionally, the governor of Florida wrote how he was shocked to discover left-wing voices siding with such a giant corporation.
In the coming weeks, Florida lawmakers will meet next week to decide whether Disney World’s self-governing power should be replaced by a state board under sweeping plans backed by DeSantis.
The session will focus on whether to reverse the earlier decision to dissolve the district and Disney’s special governance privileges, which it has held for 55 years.
Since 1967, Disney has been responsible for the government of an area known as Reedy Creek. Critics of the company say the deal gives the firm special legal and tax privileges.
Therefore, the plan to install a state board could force Disney to pay the debt, it is claimed.
DeSantis launched the effort to change Disney’s self-governing powers after Chapek condemned Florida’s educational rights bill.
Last week, DeSantis visited Staten Island to have breakfast with police as he kicked off his “Law & Order” tour.
The Florida governor’s turn to the Northeast has fueled speculation that he is getting closer to announcing a 2024 run for president.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis kicked off his multi-city ‘Law & Order’ tour with a stop in Staten Island, New York on Monday, February 20, 2023.
The tour is fueling speculation that DeSantis will soon launch a Republican presidential primary bid against former President Donald Trump in 2024.
The visit coincided with the President’s Day holiday and as former President Donald Trump continues to launch attacks on DeSantis, who is quickly emerging as the most likely to defeat the former president in a primary.
However, DeSantis has currently remained relatively quiet on the presidential ambitions front, saying at a press conference this month “wouldn’t you like to know?” when a reporter asked him if he would run now that former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley announced his candidacy.
As of now, both Trump and his former ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, are the only two major Republicans to launch an official run for the White House in 2024.
But at least a few dozen others are considering or are rumored to be considering a run, including former Vice President Mike Pence, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott and former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan.