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Ron DeSantis news – live: Governor outlines ‘nightmarish’ Supreme Court vision and drops 2024 clue on Twitter

Ron DeSantis is expected to officially enter the 2024 presidential race this week following months of speculation.

The Florida governor is tipped to file formal paperwork with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) on Thursday 25 May, coinciding with his candidacy declaration after a donor meeting in Miami, Reuters reported last week.

On Monday, Mr DeSantis, 44, teased his 2024 bid while speaking at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention in Orlando in which he outlined his vision for a conservative grip on the Supreme Court to last a quarter of a century.

In what appeared to be a subtle swipe at Donald Trump he announced his plans to run for eight years – something Mr Trump cannot do.

Mr DeSantis, 44, is seen as Mr Trump’s biggest rival for the Republican vote with several Republican lawmakers and right-wing media rallying behind him after the midterms.

However, the latest polls show Mr DeSantis trailing Mr Trump.

This comes at a time when Mr DeSantis is going to war with Disney and pushing back on the NAACP‘s advisory warning travellers that Florida is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people due to his laws.

Key Points

DeSantis outlines vision for growing conservative majority on Supreme Court

17:50 , Oliver O'Connell

Speaking to the National Religious Broadcasters Convention in Orlando on Monday night, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis outlined his vision for maintaining and even growing the conservative majority on the Supreme Court.

The Washington Post reports that he proposed that should he be elected president and serve two full terms, the number of conservative justices could rise to seven out of the total of nine, indicating that John Roberts (who sometimes sides with the liberal judges) and Sonia Sotomayor may need to be replaced.

“So it is possible that in those eight years, we have the opportunity to fortify justices … Alito and Thomas as well as actually make improvements with those others, and if you were able to do that, you would have a 7-2 conservative majority on the Supreme Court that would last a quarter-century,” Mr DeSantis said to raucous applause.

Democratic groups have described the scenario as “nightmarish”.

DeSantis drops ‘FL’ from Twitter handle as expected 2024 announcement looms

17:38 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis appears to have dropped the letters “FL” from his personal Twitter handle and acquired the @RonDeSantis handle from its previous owner.

His team appears to have also dropped the Sunshine State from their handle, becoming @TeamRonDeSantis.

The official announcement of his candidacy is expected this week as he files the paperwork and meets with donors, having already visited many early primary states and embarked on a short international trip.

On Monday, Senator Tim Scott entered the race to be the Republican nominee and got a surprisingly warm welcome from the current leader of the pack Donald Trump (who unsurprisingly also dissed DeSantis in the same post).

DeSantis responds to NAACP call for tourists to boycott Florida

17:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is brushing off any concern about the NAACP issuing a formal advisory warning travelers that the Sunshine State is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people.

The Independent approached Mr DeSantis’ office on Monday about the advisory issued by the largest and oldest civil rights organisation in the United States on 20 May.

Alex Woodward reports.

DeSantis responds to NAACP call for tourists to boycott Florida

Trump bashes DeSantis as he shares surprisingly positive response to another 2024 challenger

17:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump took yet another swing at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis as he welcomed South Carolina Senator Tim Scott to the Republican presidential race.

Read more...

Trump slams DeSantis as he welcomes Tim Scott to presidential race

DeSantis asks that judge be disqualified from Disney's free speech lawsuit

16:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Governor Ron DeSantis is asking that a federal judge be disqualified from the First Amendment lawsuit filed by Disney against the Florida governor and his appointees, claiming the jurist’s prior statements in other cases have raised questions about his impartiality on the state’s efforts to take over Disney World’s governing body.

Read more...

DeSantis asks that judge be disqualified from Disney's free speech lawsuit

Trump v DeSantis: a timeline

16:00 , Oliver O'Connell

No one will be watching more keenly than Donald Trump this week as Florida governor Ron DeSantis finally makes the long-awaited announcement that he will seek the Republican nomination for the presidency in 2024.

During his own tenure in the White House in 2018, Mr Trump loudly cheered Mr DeSantis’s bid for the governor’s mansion, throwing his weight behind the former congressman and appearing at rallies to stump for him, playing an important role in the candidate’s narrow defeat of Democratic rival and Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum.

Since then, however, a great deal of water has passed beneath the bridge and the two men are now increasingly antagonistic towards each other.

A timeline of Donald Trump’s rivalry with Ron DeSantis

DeSantis anti-LGBT+ laws see wave of Pride events cancelled across Florida

15:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Pride organisers in Florida have called off events that were to take place during the Pride Month in the wake of the latest anti-LGBT+ laws signed by Florida governor Ron DeSantis.

Organisers based in the town of St Cloud outside Orlando announced on Thursday that they have cancelled the upcoming 10 June event, saying they are aware that it is “unsafe to hold the event”.

Shweta Sharma reports.

Pride events cancelled across Florida due to ‘climate of fear’ after anti-LGBT+ laws

MLK’s daughter condemns Ted Cruz and backs calls for ‘racist’ Florida boycott

15:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Texas Senator Ted Cruz found himself denounced by the daughter of late civil rights champion Dr Martin Luther King Jr on Sunday after he attempted to invoke Dr King’s legacy in order to attack the modern incarnation of the anti-racism movement.

Mr Cruz used Dr King’s name in his own tweet attacking the NAACP, one of America’s oldest and best-known anti-racist institutions.

John Bowden has the story.

Martin Luther King’s daughter condemns Ted Cruz over NAACP Florida travel warning

Student who tracked Elon Musk’s private jet is now following Ron DeSantis

14:35 , Oliver O'Connell

The college student who tracked Elon Musk’s private jet on Twitter has now turned his focus on Florida governor Ron DeSantis.

Jack Sweeney, a student at the University of Central Florida, created a Twitter account called “@DeSantisJet”, which tracks the whereabouts of the aircraft that Mr DeSantis uses.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar reports.

College student who tracked Elon Musk’s private jet is now following Ron DeSantis

DeSantis teases 2024 bid – with a swipe at Trump

14:00 , Rachel Sharp

On Monday, Ron DeSantis teased his 2024 bid while speaking at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention in Orlando.

In what appeared to be a subtle swipe at Donald Trump he announced his plans to run for eight years – something Mr Trump cannot do after already serving four years.

Mr DeSantis also vowed to “protect” faith and family during the Christian event.

“My first job as governor, after getting sworn in on the steps of the Capitol, was to go back to the governor’s residence … to get our son Mason baptised,” he said.

Trump bashes DeSantis as he shares surprisingly positive response to Scott entering 2024 race

13:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump took yet another swing at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis as he welcomed South Carolina Senator Tim Scott to the Republican presidential race.

Gustaf Kilander has the story.

Trump slams DeSantis as he welcomes Tim Scott to presidential race

Trump v DeSantis: A timeline

12:30 , Oliver O'Connell

No one will be watching more keenly than Donald Trump this week as Florida governor Ron DeSantis finally makes the long-awaited announcement that he will seek the Republican nomination for the presidency in 2024.

During his own tenure in the White House in 2018, Mr Trump loudly cheered Mr DeSantis’s bid for the governor’s mansion, throwing his weight behind the former congressman and appearing at rallies to stump for him, playing an important role in the candidate’s narrow defeat of Democratic rival and Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum.

Since then, however, a great deal of water has passed beneath the bridge and the two men are now increasingly antagonistic towards each other.

Joe Sommerlad reports.

A timeline of Donald Trump’s rivalry with Ron DeSantis

DeSantis responds to NAACP advising against travel to ‘openly hostile’ Florida

11:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is brushing off any concern about the NAACP issuing a formal advisory warning travelers that the Sunshine State is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people.

The Independent approached Mr DeSantis’ office on Monday about the advisory issued by the largest and oldest civil rights organisation in the United States on 20 May.

Alex Woodward reports.

DeSantis responds to NAACP advising against travel to ‘openly hostile’ Florida

South Carolina Republicans hear pitches from 2024 candidates

09:30 , Oliver O'Connell

South Carolina Republicans on Saturday selected Drew McKissick as their chairman for a fourth term at a convention where some of the party’s 2024 presidential hopefuls made pitches to voters in the first-in-the-South primary state.

McKissick has led the party since 2017 in a state where the GOP holds all statewide-elected positions, all but one U.S. House seat and control of both legislative chambers. He defeated three challengers. Party officials said in a release that under McKissick’s leadership, “more Republicans than ever before” had won election.

South Carolina Republicans hear pitches from 2024 candidates, reelect state party chairman

Profile: Casey DeSantis

07:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Joe Sommerlad writes:

As Mr DeSantis prepares to take the national stage, interest will inevitably turn towards his personal life and that of his wife, Casey DeSantis, as prospective US first lady.

Who is Casey DeSantis? What we know about Florida governor Ron’s wife

NAACP advises against traveling to Florida

05:30 , Oliver O'Connell

The largest and oldest civil rights organisation in the United States has issued a formal advisory warning travelers to Florida that the state is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people.

An advisory issued by the NAACP on 20 May comes as a response to a series of laws signed by Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis targeting classroom instruction around race and racism, gender and sexuality, and bills and administration policy aimed at LGBT+ people.

Alex Woodward reports.

NAACP advises against traveling to Florida: ‘Openly hostile toward African Americans’

DeSantis asks that judge be disqualified from Disney's free speech lawsuit

03:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Gov. Ron DeSantis is asking that a federal judge be disqualified from the First Amendment lawsuit filed by Disney against the Florida governor and his appointees, claiming the jurist’s prior statements in other cases have raised questions about his impartiality on the state’s efforts to take over Disney World’s governing body.

Read on...

DeSantis asks that judge be disqualified from Disney's free speech lawsuit

Ahead of 2024 announcement, DeSantis meets New Hampshire lawmakers, greets voters

02:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Chatting with a mom in a New Hampshire diner on Friday, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis paid no attention to the Mickey Mouse shirt worn by her young son. But the woman said she has been paying attention to him.

“If DeSantis announced a campaign to run for president I would probably vote for him over anybody else,” Jillian Sybert, of Deerfield, said later.

Read more:

DeSantis meets New Hampshire lawmakers, greets voters ahead of expected 2024 announcement

Tampa Pride event cancelled over Florida’s latest anti-LGBT+ laws

Tuesday 23 May 2023 00:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A signature pride event in Tampa has been cancelled in the wake of the latest anti-LGBTQ+ legislation signed into law by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Organizers confirmed on Thursday (18 May) that this year’s Tampa Pride on the River will not take place as a result of the heated political climate in the Sunshine State.

Andrea Blanco reports.

Tampa Pride event cancelled over Ron DeSantis’ latest anti-LGBT+ laws

On the ground in Iowa as DeSantis backers build camapaign

Monday 22 May 2023 23:30 , Oliver O'Connell

DeSantis super PAC tackles tricky task of organizing support for him in Iowa without the candidate

ICYMI: DeSantis signs bills targeting drag shows, pronouns, bathroom use and transgender children

Monday 22 May 2023 22:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis chose a Christian school as his setting for signing bills Wednesday that ban gender affirming care for minors, restricts pronoun use in schools and forces people to use the bathroom corresponding with their sex in some cases.

Read more...

DeSantis signs bills targeting drag shows, pronouns, bathroom use and transgender children

DeSantis drops ‘FL’ from Twitter handle

Monday 22 May 2023 22:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis appears to have dropped the letters “FL” from his Twitter handle and acquired the @RonDeSantis handle from its previous owner.

Super PAC backing Nikki Haley’s 2024 run attacks DeSantis

Monday 22 May 2023 21:30 , Oliver O'Connell

SFA, the Super PAC backing Nikki Haley, has taken multiple shots at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis today as he nears a campaign launch, including linking to a Reuters exclusive concerning texts tying Mr DeSantis to Trump insider Lev Parnas in his 2018 race to become governor.

Reuters: Texts tie DeSantis closely to Trump insider Lev Parnas in 2018 race

Monday 22 May 2023 21:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Ukrainian-American businessman Lev Parnas and his business partner were arrested in 2019, accused by the US government of funneling a Russian oligarch’s money into American political campaigns. One recipient of Parnas’ donations — Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — has said he was barely an acquaintance.

“The governor does not have a relationship with these individuals,” DeSantis’ spokesperson at the time, Helen Aguirre Ferré, said in a statement on October 10, 2019. Six days later, DeSantis told reporters that Parnas "was just like any other donor, nothing more than that.”

But DeSantis and Parnas worked more closely together than the Republican governor has disclosed, according to a detailed account of their relationship Parnas provided to Reuters and 63 previously unreported text messages from DeSantis to Parnas between May and October 2018, as DeSantis campaigned for governor. A jury later found Parnas guilty of campaign finance crimes and other charges.

As DeSantis prepares to take a widely anticipated leap into the 2024 presidential campaign this week, the disclosures from Parnas cast new light on the Florida governor’s relationship with the businessman and the role Parnas played in helping DeSantis gain entree to the circle of former President Donald Trump.

DeSantis spokesman Dave Abrams did not respond to specific questions on the existence of the texts and Parnas’ account of their relationship. “This is another recycled narrative that has been proven wrong many times over," he said. DeSantis gave back the contribution after Parnas ran into legal trouble.

The text messages reviewed by Reuters show that DeSantis frequently – in more than 20 texts – appealed to fellow Floridian Parnas for introductions, advice and other fundraising help during his hotly contested campaign for governor. Two sources close to DeSantis during his 2018 campaign confirmed the texter’s number belonged to DeSantis at that time.

The texts also reveal that Parnas served as an intermediary between DeSantis and former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who at the time was the personal attorney of then-President Trump. In one case, 10 days before the 2018 election, DeSantis sent Parnas a text with suggested wording for a Giuliani tweet in support of his candidacy, the messages show.

Giuliani did not respond to questions sent through his attorney and his spokesman. Ferré, DeSantis’ former spokesperson, did not respond to requests for comment.

Reuters — Full Story

Trump bashes DeSantis as he shares surprisingly positive response to Tim Scott

Monday 22 May 2023 20:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump took yet another swing at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis as he welcomed South Carolina Senator Tim Scott to the Republican presidential race.

Gustaf Kilander reports from Washington, DC.

Trump slams DeSantis as he welcomes Tim Scott to presidential race

Trump v DeSantis: A timeline of their rivalry

Monday 22 May 2023 20:00 , Oliver O'Connell

No one will be watching more keenly than Donald Trump this week as Florida governor Ron DeSantis finally makes the long-awaited announcement that he will seek the Republican nomination for the presidency in 2024.

During his own tenure in the White House in 2018, Mr Trump loudly cheered Mr DeSantis’s bid for the governor’s mansion, throwing his weight behind the former congressman and appearing at rallies to stump for him, playing an important role in the candidate’s narrow defeat of Democratic rival and Tallahassee mayor Andrew Gillum.

Since then, however, a great deal of water has passed beneath the bridge and the two men are now increasingly antagonistic towards each other.

Joe Sommerlad reports.

A timeline of Donald Trump’s rivalry with Ron DeSantis

Monday 22 May 2023 19:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Trump campaign knocks DeSantis over latest in Disney feud

Monday 22 May 2023 19:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump’s 2024 campaign wasted no time in knocking Florida Governor Ron DeSantis over the news that Disney is cancelling a $1bn plan to expand its business in Florida.

The campaign for the former president to return to the White House sent out a fundraising email on 18 May after the news broke about the shelving of the planned relocation of some thousands of staff to the Orlando area.

Read on...

Trump campaign knocks DeSantis over Disney’s cancelled Florida expansion plan

Pro-Trump Super PAC uses Tim Scott’s announcement to mock Ron DeSantis

Monday 22 May 2023 18:30 , Oliver O'Connell

A super PAC supporting former president Donald Trump’s campaign used the entrance of Sen Tim Scott (R - South Carolina) into the 2024 Republican presidential race to hit his main rival, Florida governor Ron DeSantis.

Make America Great Again Inc, a super PAC that supports Mr Trump, used Mr Scott’s planned announcement to repeat Mr Trump’s attacks on Mr DeSantis.

Eric Garcia reports.

Pro-Trump Super PAC uses Tim Scott’s announcement to mock Ron DeSantis

Voices: Tim Scott, the newest 2024 Republican candidate, is the most interesting -and most frustrating -Senator

Monday 22 May 2023 18:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Why Tim Scott is the most interesting - and most frustrating - Senator

Who is Casey DeSantis?

Monday 22 May 2023 17:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Here’s a profile of Florida’s first lady: a former TV news anchor, mother of three and breast cancer survivor, whom insiders have recently suggested has too great an influence over her husband’s policy positions.

Who is Casey DeSantis? What we know about Florida governor Ron’s wife

Tim Scott launches 2024 presidential run

Monday 22 May 2023 17:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Sen Tim Scott, the sole Black Republican in the United States Senate, announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president, joining a crowded field.

Mr Scott made the announcement in his home of North Charleston, where he referenced his humble upbringing, noting how his grandfather worked in cotton fields in South Carolina.

“My family went from cotton to Congress in his lifetime. And it was possible because my grandfather had stubborn faith.”

Tim Scott, the Senate’s sole Black Republican, announces 2024 presidential candidacy

Watch: Tim Scott to announce 2024 run

Monday 22 May 2023 16:21 , Oliver O'Connell

DeSantis slams NAACP advising against travel to ‘openly hostile’ Florida

Monday 22 May 2023 16:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is brushing off any concern about the NAACP issuing a formal advisory warning travelers that the Sunshine State is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people.

The Independent approached Mr DeSantis’ office on Monday about the advisory issued by the largest and oldest civil rights organisation in the United States on 20 May.

Read more...

DeSantis responds to NAACP advising against travel to ‘openly hostile’ Florida

'What if it’s neither Biden nor Trump?’

Monday 22 May 2023 15:30 , Joe Sommerlad

For Indy Voices, Skylar Baker-Jordan tackles the assumption that next year’s race will simply end up a rematch of the ugly 2020 encounter between Joe Biden and Donald Trump.

Are the likes of Ron DeSantis, Nikki Haley and Tim Scott really in with a shot at loosening Mr Trump’s grip on the Republican ticket?

What if it’s neither Biden nor Trump?

Are truckers really boycotting Florida over immigration policies?

Monday 22 May 2023 14:30 , Joe Sommerlad

In recent days, social media has been flooded with videos of truck drivers claiming they are boycotting Florida after Mr DeSantis signed into law a strict immigration enforcement bill.

According to the social media posts, truckers across the United States had decided en masse to cease deliveries to the Sunshine State, citing the tough immigration policies.

One TikToker who made a video about his own concerns about the law, sanchezmanuel33, told The Independent that he believed “thousands” of truckers were participating.

However, it does not appear that any such mass demonstration has taken place as of yet. So how did the story spread?

Are truckers really boycotting Florida over Gov DeSantis’ immigration policies?

Tampa Pride event cancelled over DeSantis’s latest anti-LGBT+ laws

Monday 22 May 2023 14:00 , Joe Sommerlad

It’s not just the NAACP that feels alienated from Florida in the DeSantis era.

Tampa Pride president Carrie West said last week that the event, which is held every September along the city’s riverwalk, has had to be cancelled out of concern that its “drag brunches” would be in violation of the state’s regressive new laws.

“Really, I’m sorry,” she told WFLA. “I’m sorry that this has happened, but you are going to be the generation to make the change.”

Tampa Pride event cancelled over Ron DeSantis’ latest anti-LGBT+ laws

DeSantis mocked over bizarre video of roaring laughter: ‘A faulty robot’

Monday 22 May 2023 13:30 , Joe Sommerlad

Here’s a little more on the Florida governor’s appearance in Iowa over the weekend, when his notoriously awkward approach to meeting the general public and engaging in “retail politics” was on full display.

Ron DeSantis mocked over bizarre video of roaring laughter

What do we know about DeSantis’s background as a teacher?

Monday 22 May 2023 13:00 , Joe Sommerlad

As the Florida governor prepares to take the national stage this week, attention is likely to turn towards his personal history and family life.

Here’s an overview of what we know about the year he spent teaching high school history at the Darlington School in Rome, Georgia, during the 2001/02 academic year, shortly after he graduated from Yale.

What do we know about Ron DeSantis’s teaching career?

DeSantis v Disney: Why Florida’s governor is at war with the House of Mouse

Monday 22 May 2023 12:45 , Joe Sommerlad

If you need an introduction to Mr DeSantis’s unlikely beef with the beloved entertainment brand, who hosted his own wedding back in September 2009, Alex Woodward has this comprehensive explanation.

DeSantis v Disney: Why Florida’s governor is at war with the Mouse

DeSantis asks for judge to be disqualified from Disney free speech lawsuit

Monday 22 May 2023 12:30 , Joe Sommerlad

Mr DeSantis is asking that a federal judge be disqualified from the First Amendment lawsuit filed by Disney against him and his appointees, claiming the jurist’s prior statements in other cases have raised questions about his impartiality on the state’s efforts to take over Disney World’s governing body.

Mr DeSantis’ attorney filed a motion in federal court in Tallahassee on Friday seeking to disqualify US district judge Mark Walker from overseeing the lawsuit filed by Disney last month.

The lawsuit alleges that Mr DeSantis and his appointees violated the company’s right to free speech, as well as the contracts clause, by taking over the special governing district that previously had been controlled by Disney supporters after Disney opposed Florida legislation that critics have dubbed “Don’t Say Gay.”

The Republican governor’s motion was filed a day after Disney announced that it was scrapping plans to build a new campus in central Florida and relocate 2,000 employees from Southern California to work in digital technology, finance and product development, amid an ongoing feud with DeSantis.

Read more:

DeSantis asks that judge be disqualified from Disney's free speech lawsuit

DeSantis super PAC tackles tricky task of organising support for him in Iowa without the candidate

Monday 22 May 2023 12:15 , Joe Sommerlad

More than 600 Iowa Republicans filed into the exhibit hall in Dean’s Classic Car Museum in Sioux Center, Iowa, over the weekend, past the display’s brochures about Ron DeSantis and cards to sign pledging their support for him in next year’s Republican presidential caucuses.

The display, with all the earmarks of a presidential campaign, was the work of Never Back Down, a super political action committee promoting Mr DeSantis while he moves toward a 2024 bid.

It was also an early glimpse of how this group – able to receive unlimited sums from wealthy donors, unlike a presidential campaign – plans to build a network of supporters necessary to compete in the caucuses.

Essentially, it’s a caucus campaign that, for legal reasons, cannot attach itself explicitly to a candidate.

The novel approach, aimed at maximising super PAC dollars, underscores the stakes in Iowa for Mr DeSantis.

He needs to show early that he is a viable threat to former president Donald Trump, whose team says it has already signed up thousands of Iowa volunteers and supporters before Mr DeSantis has even declared his candidacy.

Read more:

DeSantis super PAC tackles tricky task of organizing support for him in Iowa without the candidate

DeSantis meets lawmakers and greets voters in New Hampshire

Monday 22 May 2023 12:00 , Joe Sommerlad

Chatting with a mom in a New Hampshire diner on Friday, Ron DeSantis paid no attention to the Mickey Mouse shirt worn by her young son. But the woman said she has been paying attention to him.

“If DeSantis announced a campaign to run for president I would probably vote for him over anybody else,” Jillian Sybert, of Deerfield, said later.

Mr DeSantis made the swing to the early voting state as he prepares to launch a 2024 Republican presidential campaign. He spent the morning meeting with state GOP lawmakers still licking their wounds a day after the New Hampshire House rejected a bill that would have required school officials to inform inquiring parents if their child was using a different name or being referred to as a different gender.

Republicans hold a razor-thin majority in the 400-member House, but Democrats had a one-vote edge in attendance for Thursday’s session.

In contrast, GOP supermajorities in the Florida Statehouse have helped DeSantis push through an aggressive agenda on multiple fronts, including gender identity, and he has made anti-LGBTQ+ legislation a large part of his messaging as he prepares to seek the Republican presidential nomination.

Read more:

DeSantis meets New Hampshire lawmakers, greets voters ahead of expected 2024 announcement

‘Don’t look now, but Ron DeSantis just suffered some big losses'

Monday 22 May 2023 11:45 , Joe Sommerlad

For Indy Voices, Eric Garcia reflects on two embarrassing defeats sustained by candidates endorsed by Mr DeSantis within the last week: Daniel Davis’s failed bid to become mayor of Jacksonville and Kelly Craft’s poor showing in pursuit of the Republican nomination to be the next governor of Kentucky.

Don’t look now, but Ron DeSantis just suffered some big losses

NAACP advises against traveling to Florida: ‘Openly hostile toward African Americans’

Monday 22 May 2023 11:30 , Rachel Sharp

The largest and oldest civil rights organisation in the United States has issued a formal advisory warning travelers to Florida that the state is “openly hostile” towards Black people, people of colour and LGBT+ people.

An advisory issued by the NAACP on 20 May comes as a response to a series of laws signed by Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis targeting classroom instruction around race and racism, gender and sexuality, and bills and administration policy aimed at LGBT+ people.

“Let me be clear – failing to teach an accurate representation of the horrors and inequalities that Black Americans have faced and continue to face is a disservice to students and a dereliction of duty to all,” NAACP president and CEO Derrick Johnson said in a statement.

Read more:

NAACP advises against traveling to Florida: ‘Openly hostile toward African Americans’

Who is running for president in 2024?

Monday 22 May 2023 11:20 , Rachel Sharp

With less than two years remaining until US voters will decide who will serve as president of the United States from January 2025 to January 2029, former Republican government officials are starting to jockey for position in the coming fight for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, while at least one prominent Democrat (California governor Gavin Newsom) has reportedly pledged not to challenge President Joe Biden in a Democratic primary.

As the campaign takes shape, here are the names you need to know.

Read more:

Who is running for president in 2024?

Ron DeSantis expected to join 2024 race this week

Monday 22 May 2023 11:15 , Rachel Sharp

Ron DeSantis is expected to officially enter the 2024 presidential race this week following months of speculation.

The Florida governor is tipped to file formal paperwork with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) on Thursday 25 May, coinciding his candidacy declaration with a donor meeting in Miami, Reuters reported last week.

Mr DeSantis, 44, is eyed as Donald Trump’s biggest rival for the Republican vote and has been expected to throw his hat into the ring for some time.

Following the GOP party’s disappoining midterms – where the “red wave” failed to appear and Mr Trump-endorsed candidates fell flat – several Republican lawmakers and right-wing media have rallied behind Mr DeSantis as their candidate of choice.

However, latest polls show Mr DeSantis trailing Mr Trump, with the RealClearPolitics polling average giving the former president a 36-point lead.

Mr DeSantis will join an already crowded race, with Nikki Haley, Asa Hutchinson, Vivek Ramaswamy, Larry Elder and Tim Scott already announcing bids.

Read more:

Ron DeSantis expected to launch 2024 presidential bid next week, reports say

Welcome to The Independent’s liveblog on Ron DeSantis’ expected 2024 bid

Monday 22 May 2023 11:10 , Rachel Sharp

Follow along for all the latest updates