Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) has responded to Disney’s lawsuit, claiming the company is attempting to “undermine the will” of the citizens of Florida and has “no legitimate right to corporate welfare.”
The Walt Disney Company sued DeSantis in federal court on Wednesday, saying that the Republican governor has launched a “targeted effort of government retaliation” regarding the ongoing battle over Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Law, dubbed “Don’t Say Gay” by the mainstream media.
DeSantis stripped Disney of its self-governing powers in the Orlando region after the California-based business openly pledged to sue to overturn the Florida legislation – a key corporate benefit Disney has been enjoying for five decades.
A DeSantis representative published a comment immediately after the lawsuit was announced on Wednesday.
“We are not aware of any right under the law that a business has to run under its own government or have special privileges that aren’t enjoyed by other companies in the state,” DeSantis said in a statement. “This lawsuit is simply another unfortunate indication of their desire to undermine Florida voters’ will and function outside of the boundaries of the law.”
Another DeSantis spokeswoman tweeted, “There is no legal right to corporate welfare.”
Disney claims that DeSantis has “weaponized” government authority against the corporation and has “orchestrated at every move” of the endeavor to penalize Disney in ways that endanger its operations.
Disney’s action comes as both sides continue to fight for control of Orlando’s Reedy Creek special district.
Last year, Florida removed Disney’s self-government privileges in the district after the company began a political battle with DeSantis concerning the Parental Rights in Education Act, which bans public schools from converting students with radical gender ideology, which includes transgenderism, in addition to other forms of sexual ideology.
Since then, DeSantis and Disney have remained at odds over control of Reedy Creek, with Disney attempting to avoid a state takeover through backdoor legal tactics.