Ron DeSantis Slams ‘Chamber of Commerce Republicans’

AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis says he will use the White House to counter corporate “sexualization of children” and universities’ promotion of “gender studies.”

“If you can’t stand up for the protection of children, what good are you as a governor?” DeSantis told the audience at an event on July 26, adding:

These are like these Chamber of Commerce Republicans, you know, whatever the corporations want, they bow down to, and that doesn’t work in a free society. It doesn’t work to have a just society, because corporate America — unfortunately — has become polluted with ideology, and they’re pursuing agendas. And the sexualization of children is wrong, and we are going to do battle with anybody that is seeking to rob our children of their innocence.

The next day, DeSantis carried that argument against the transgender ideology into an answer about the student loans that have made it difficult for so many young people to get started.

“Look at the student debt problem,” he told an interviewer on Real America’s Voice:

I don’t think taxpayers should pick up the debt because you have a truck driver paying the debt for someone that got a degree in gender studies. That doesn’t make sense. However, a lot of these students were sold  a bill of goods by the universities — the universities were putting themselves out [saying] “Unless you get a degree you’re not going to be successful.” And the universities wanted them taking out a lot of loans … So we’re going to do two things.

One, we’re going to deal with the loans by making the universities responsible for loans. If that is the case, you’re going to see things like gender studies dry up. They’re going to focus on engineering, they’re going to focus on things where they know people will be gainfully employed. So I think making sure college and universities are actually fulfilling the traditional mission, and it’s not just ideological studies — I think that that’s very, very important.

But I would also shift student aid to vocational training. You can go through some of the technical training, welding, commercial vehicles, all this stuff — you’re making like a hundred grand by the time you’re 20 with no debt or very little debt. That is good and what ends up — what we’ve seen in Florida — so we’ve doubled apprenticeships in Florida. We’ve done things like, we had been producing 600 truck drivers a year through our state college system before I became governor. Now we’re doing 3,500. These guys are getting $110,000 to drive for Walmart right now.

DeSantis’ challenge to the business and university establishments comes amid media reports that major business donors — including Rupert Murdoch, the owner of Fox News — are backing away from his campaign.

For example, USAToday reported on July 28:

Billionaire businessman Thomas Peterffy has put his wealth and verbal support behind [investor and Virginia Gov. Glenn] Youngkin, calling him “an ideal candidate” for the GOP.

“I very much hope that he’s going to enter the race. People I speak to are all favorably inclined towards him,” Peterffy told Fox Business Wednesday. “If he entered, I think there would be tremendous enthusiasm.”

Once a major funder of DeSantis’s campaign, Peterffy halted his contributions back in April over issues with the Florida governor’s stances on abortion and book banning.

DeSantis has been a leading opponent of the progressive campaign to change Americans’ understanding of biology, sex, and civic norms:



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