Former President Donald Trump recently blamed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) for failing to prevent Disney from becoming “woke.”
Trump blames DeSantis for Disney becoming ‘woke’ https://t.co/6KPbIo7iTE
— The Independent (@Independent) May 29, 2023
On Truth Social, Trump criticized Disney and DeSantis, calling the company “a Woke and Disgusting shadow of its former self.”
Trump warned that if Disney does not “go back to what it once was,” “the ‘market’ will do irreparable damage” to the company.
After putting Disney on blast, Trump blamed the company’s “woke” attitude on “the Governorship of ‘Rob’ Sanctimonious,” adding that the governor’s battle with Disney was for “publicity reasons only” and that “he should have stopped it long ago.”
Forbes recently reported that Trump’s comments “appear to be a slight change in tactics.”
In April 2022, after DeSantis released new plans aimed at Disney’s Florida-based theme parks and resorts, Trump posted on Truth Social that “DeSanctus” was “being absolutely destroyed by Disney.”
The former president added that DeSantis’ publicity stunt would result in Disney withdrawing from future investments in Florida, if not sell “certain properties, or the whole thing.”
On May 18, 2023, Disney, citing “new leadership and changing business conditions,” backed out of a $1 billion office complex plan in Orlando. If the project had gone forward, more than 2,000 jobs would have been created in Florida, with over 1,000 employees moving to the Sunshine State from California.
Responding to Disney’s announcement, the Trump campaign released an email with the heading: “President Trump is always right.”
Since March 2022, DeSantis has battled Disney after the company and its former CEO Bob Chapek opposed Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill which limited gender identity discussions in elementary schools.
DeSantis, who signed the legislation, responded by removing Disney’s Reedy Creek Improvement District, a “special” state district that overlooked the company’s 27,000-acre theme park and resort. He later “cherry-picked” board members to govern its replacement, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.
Disney’s lawyers made the next move in the battle by creating an arrangement that hindered the new board’s authority and allowed the company to retain its authority over its building projects.
Recently, after DeSantis and the board rescinded Disney’s arrangement, the company filed a lawsuit against the governor and his board, and asked federal courts to overturn Florida’s ongoing efforts to “control” Walt Disney World. Disney has modified the lawsuit several times since and has accused DeSantis of “waging a war of retaliation” against the company over its First Amendment rights.