Bette Midler Erupts at Ron DeSantis over Florida’s Don’t-Groom-Kids Bill

Michael Zorn; Wilfredo Lee/AP
Michael Zorn; Wilfredo Lee/AP

Bette Midler has attacked Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) over the state’s Parental Rights in Education bill that would ban the teaching of sexuality and transgender ideology to children in kindergarten through third grade.

The left-wing Hollywood star claimed the governor cooked up the legislation to boost his election year chances. She also accused DeSantis of killing off Floridians during the coronavirus pandemic while failing to mention that Florida has a lower COVID-19 death rate than her home state of New York.

Midler used the Democrat’s false nickname “Don’t Say Gay” to refer to the Florida legislation in a tweet on Monday.

“Ron DeSantis’ invented his ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill because it’s an election year & he wants to get his base all riled up,” the actress wrote. “Ron, they’re easier to rile when you don’t kill a bunch of them with Covid.”

Florida currently stands at 335 COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 people, lower than New York’s 348 deaths per 100,000.

Last week, the Florida Senate passed the Parental Rights in Education bill, paving the way for DeSantis to sign it into law.

Bette Midler recently finished shooting Disney’s Hocus Pocus 2. The studio recently criticized the Florida bill, with Disney CEO Bob Chapek breaking the company’s silence after a deluge of negative publicity and internal pressure from LGBTQ employees.

“You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down. I am sorry,” Chapek said in a recent memo to staffers.

As Breitbart News reported, DeSantis has slammed Disney for backtracking on its initial refusal to take sides.

“When you have companies that have made a fortune off being family-friendly and catering to families and young kids, they should understand that parents of young kids do not want this injected into their kid’s kindergarten classroom,” he said.

Follow David Ng on Twitter @HeyItsDavidNg. Have a tip? Contact me at


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.