Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and his conservative backers in the state’s Legislature have already managed to solidify their state’s reputation as a global disgrace.
Last year, a United Nations committee issued a report expressing concern about draconian anti-protest legislation that DeSantis signed into law. And Florida’s governor isn’t done earning international ire.
On Monday, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador condemned DeSantis for his support of Senate Bill 1718, a repressive anti-immigration bill that would make it a state crime to transport an undocumented migrant into Florida. DeSantis is expected to sign the legislation.
The bill would also authorize $12 million for the program enabling DeSantis’ political stunts in which he flies migrants to other states while portraying them as burdens to society, and it would punish businesses that hire undocumented people.
Migrants’ lawyer slams DeSantis for using them as ‘political props’Sept. 27, 202203:00
“Why does [DeSantis] have to take advantage of people’s pain, of migrants’ pain, of people’s need for political gain,” López Obrador said at a news conference, according to Politico. “This is immoral. This is politicking.”
Mexico’s president didn’t stop there.
“Now I found out that the Florida governor — imagine, Florida, which is full of migrants — is taking repressive, inhumane measures against migrants in Florida because he wants to be a candidate,” López Obrador said about the likely presidential candidate. “Can’t he not make another proposal to convince people?”
Immigrant rights advocates in Florida have vocally opposed SB 1718, including religious groups that provide aid to migrants. After several church leaders sounded the alarm that the legislation could criminalize their work, Republicans altered the bill’s language slightly. Whereas an initial version of the bill authorized punishment for anyone who helps an undocumented person travel “into or within” Florida, the version awaiting DeSantis’ signature would not criminalize the transport of migrants within the state.
DeSantis pushed for the bill to include a ban on in-state college tuition costs for undocumented students, but that wasn’t included in the final version.
Take a moment to appreciate how villainous that sounds.
DeSantis’ unhinged right-wing crusades have put him at odds with Disney, LGBTQ people, pregnant people, the Special Olympics, voters, schoolteachers, schoolchildren and hopeful migrants.
That he’s doing these things in seeming preparation for a presidential campaign tells you everything you need to know about today’s Republican Party.