‘A Slow Motion Coup.’ After Doing His Bidding on Disney, Florida Legislature Bucks DeSantis

after doing his bidding on Disney Florida Legislature bucks DeSantis
Credit: Gage Skidmore Flickr/ Disney

When it came time to retaliate against the Walt Disney Company for speaking out on Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Act, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis turned to his friends in the Florida Legislature. With little effort, DeSantis could get through the law that stripped Disney World of the Reedy Creek Improvement District and replaced it with the DeSantis appointees on the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.

DeSantis loses major donor over Disney feud

Credit: Gage Skidmore Flickr

Related: After Disney Cost DeSantis His Billionaire Donor, He Tries to Claw Back Some Respect

And when the new Board took over and learned that Disney had essentially rendered them powerless through deals struck with the Reedy Creek Board, DeSantis once again went back to the Florida Legislature to pass another law voiding all of those deals. With seemingly little effort on his part, Florida Gov Ron DeSantis has been able to entirely remake Florida and its relationship with the Walt Disney Company with the help of the Florida Legislature.

But that was before Governor DeSantis started his run for the Republican nomination for President. Back in May, when DeSantis made his announcement on X (formerly Twitter), it appeared that it was a foregone conclusion that he was in line for the nomination.

But that was four months ago, and what a four months it has been. Since then, DeSantis has slipped in the polls and joined the large pack of other Republicans trailing former President Donald Trump. According to recent polls, DeSantis has slipped into third place in New Hampshire and South Carolina, dropping nearly 32 points since January in the Granite State.

DeSantis hometown hurt by Disney feud.

Credit: Flickr: Florida Game and Wildlife/Disney

With his presidential hopes dashed, the Florida Legislature is starting to buck DeSantis, who only has two years left on his term and cannot run for re-election in 2026. Politico spoke with dozens of lobbyists and legislatures who said that Gov DeSantis’ influence is waning because of his struggles in the Republican Primaries, and most are expecting him to drop out and head home to Florida.

A major lobbyist in Tallahassee told Politico:

There’s no love lost between the Legislature and DeSantis. … They are faking it. They are waiting long enough to see the king drained of all his power. It’s a slow-motion coup.

So how will this new-found lack of power affect Walt Disney World? It’s hard to say, but Florida lawmakers have already created a new Board, and the Walt Disney Company has sued. Disney World would like its special district back, but that seems unlikely.

It is also hard to see Florida Gov DeSantis backing down from this fight on which he has staked his reputation and political capital. So, this will continue to play out in the courts.

cinderella castle, magic kingdom, disney world

Credit: Disney

In the meantime, the Republican Party will seek a new governor in Florida. Trump allies Reps. Matt Gaetz and Byron Donalds have expressed interest in running for governor in 2026, neither of whom would go looking for a DeSantis endorsement.

Most Florida lawmakers have remained neutral in the Republican Primary, meaning they believe Trump will win and DeSantis will be on his way home.

So, Disney will wait to see what its future in Central Florida holds as the Republican Party begins its search for a presidential nominee and a new governor.

We will continue to update this story at Disney Fanatic.

About Rick

Rick is an avid Disney fan. He first went to Disney World in 1986 with his parents and has been hooked ever since. Rick is married to another Disney fan and is in the process of turning his two children into fans as well. When he is not creating new Disney adventures, he loves to watch the New York Yankees and hang out with his dog, Buster. In the fall, you will catch him cheering for his beloved NY Giants.

One comment

  1. I feel that there arenso many other important issues such as Home owners insurance rising prices. Rising price of food , rent .and so much !ore.

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