DeSantis Dismisses Talk of 2024 Presidential Bid, but Continues to Campaign Across the Country

Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to dismiss the chatter about a run for high office in 2024.

“I just do my job and we work hard,” the governor said in a recent in-state press event. “I hear all this stuff,nand honestly it’s nonsense.”

He also said “speculation” to the contrary is “purely manufactured.”

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States, Not Congress, Could Pose the Biggest Threat to Tech Companies

Despite calls for increased regulation of the tech industry, Congress has yet to pass any major legislation, leaving it up to the states to take action curbing tech companies’ power and influence.

Meanwhile, state legislatures have introduced and enacted legislation on data privacy, antitrust, and content moderation, while state attorneys general have issued a number of legal challenges alleging anticompetitive business practices.

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Pima County Republican Chair Calls for Arrest of Officials Mandating Vaccine or Masks

Shelley Kais

The chairman of the Pima County Republican Party is calling for the arrest of local officials who mandate the COVID-19 vaccine or masks. In that lower part of the state, the City of Tucson requires vaccinations and the Marana School District requires masks. 

Shelley Kais told the Arizona Daily Independent, “On September 29, any school board member, city councilman, or supervisor who requires masks or vaccines mandates and passports should be arrested ” She went on, “The power grab by our elected officials to play this ‘game of chicken’ is nothing more than political and follows neither science nor good public policy. We will continue to fight for our first responders, our teachers, and the children in Pima County.” 

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Biden Commends Phoenix School District That Violated Ban on Mask Requirements

Biden Commends Phoenix School District

President Joe Biden called the head of Phoenix Union High School District after the district implemented mask requirements that may be contrary to state law, praising Superintendent Chad Geston for the move. In a statement, Biden said he told Geston during his Friday phone call that he “did the right thing.” 

The issue is currently under litigation in Maricopa County Superior Court. Numerous state legislators asked Governor Doug Ducey a few days ago to take action against the school districts in violation, and Ducey responded on Tuesday with a directive financially penalizing the districts. They will not receive any of the $163 million that the state got through the American Rescue Plan to boost per-pupil funding. Students in those districts will receive vouchers to attend schools elsewhere.

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Arizona Republican State Legislators Ask Governor to Take Action Regarding School Districts Violating Law on Mask Mandates

Doug Ducey and Jake Hoffman

Twenty-six Republican members of the Arizona Legislature signed onto a letter drafted by Rep. Jake Hoffman (R-Queen Creek) asking Arizona Governor Doug Ducey to take four steps of action in regards to several school districts that appear to be violating state law by imposing mask mandates in schools. A high school biology teacher recently filed a lawsuit over the mandate implemented by Phoenix Union High School District. The school districts contend that the law, A.R.S. 15-342.05, doesn’t apply yet since bills do not go into effect until 90 days after the end of the legislative session, but the bill contains a retroactive clause. 

“It borders on anarchy and destabilizes the very foundation of our society to have local governments effectively refusing to comply with the law. It must not be allowed to stand,” the legislators said. “Any local government that willfully and intentionally flaunts state law must be held accountable.”

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Federal Government Approves Emergency Declaration for Collapsed Building in Florida

President Joe Biden approved an emergency declaration for Florida on Friday in response to a multi-story building collapsing in Miami-Dade County.

The declaration will allow FEMA to “coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures.”

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Conservatives Criticize Washington Post for Misleading Headline on DeSantis

Many conservatives noted that The Washington Post issued a misleading headline on Thursday that mischaracterizes the contents of a bill signed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

The legislation, HB 233, “requires state colleges and universities to conduct annual assessments of the viewpoint diversity and intellectual freedom at their institutions to ensure that Florida’s postsecondary students will be shown diverse ideas and opinions, including those that they may disagree with or find uncomfortable.” DeSantis signed the legislation on Wednesday in addition to two other bills aimed at boosting civics education requirements throughout the state at all levels.

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Signs Bills to Enhance Civics Education

Classroom full of kids, that are being read a book

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed multiple bills on Tuesday aimed at increasing the level of civics education throughout the state’s schools.

“The sad reality is that only two in five Americans can correctly name the three branches of government, and more than a third of Americans cannot name any of the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment. It is abundantly clear that we need to do a much better job of educating our students in civics to prepare them for the rest of their lives,” DeSantis said when explaining the need for the legislation. 

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Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee Won’t Say Whether He’ll Send Resources to Protect the U.S.-Mexico Border

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee and members of his staff would not say Thursday whether they will dispatch resources to Texas and Arizona to help guard the U.S.-Mexican border. The Tennessee Star made repeated attempts Thursday to contact Lee’s Communications Director Laine Arnold — by email, phone, and text. Arnold did not return our messages before Thursday’s stated deadline.

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Florida Sales-Tax Collections Exceeds Expectations in April 2021

Florida’s Historic Capitol and Florida State Capitol

The month of April became the ninth consecutive month that the state of Florida exceeded its expected revenue calculations, with 56% of the total revenue gain coming from sales-tax collections.

Sales-tax revenue accounted for $2.7993 billion, which is 19% or  $447.6 million more than the estimated projection of approximately $2.3516 billion that was established by the Florida Office of Economic and Demographic Research (EDR) at the General Revenue Estimating Conference.

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Florida Bans Biological Men from Competing in Women’s Sports

Women's volleyball game

Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill Tuesday banning biological males from women’s sports.

The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act prohibits biological males from participating in athletic teams or sports designated for female students and requires that a student’s school or institution “request a certain health examination and consent form or other statement from the student’s health care provider to verify the student’s biological sex under certain circumstances.”

“The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act will empower Florida women & girls to be able to compete on a level playing field,” DeSantis tweeted Tuesday. “This will help ensure that opportunities for things like college scholarships will be protected for female athletes for years to come.”

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Commentary: Florida Governor DeSantis Strikes Back Against Big Tech Censorship

Person holding phone up in Times Square.

After months of aggressively censoring what it called “COVID-19 misinformation,” Facebook recently announced that it would no longer block user posts claiming that the coronavirus was “man-made” or “manufactured.” That’s because those posts, which typically referenced the work of scientists who supported the idea of a possible coronavirus “lab leak” from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, now appear to have been credible.

This entire episode should be extremely embarrassing for Facebook, a company so confident it has cornered the market on “truth” that it has made it their prerogative to “fact-check” individual user posts, banning anything that fails to comport with Silicon Valley’s extreme left-wing view of reality. Last year, Facebook banned an ad from the American Principles Project PAC claiming Joe Biden and the Democrats would destroy girls’ sports by supporting policies that allowed boys who identify as transgender to compete against girls.

Facebook said the ad was “missing context,” and so our PAC wasn’t allowed to communicate with voters. On Joe Biden’s first day as president, he signed an executive order specifically allowing these boys to compete in girls’ sports.

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DeSantis Signs New School Choice Law, Could Make Florida First in Nation

Ron DeSantis

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has signed an education bill that allows for greater school choice in his state.

The new law, which streamlines Florida school choice scholarship programs and expands eligibility, was touted by DeSantis at a May 11 news conference at Jacksonville Catholic School.

Children in families of four that earn less than $100,000 will be eligible for a fully funded K-12 education at the school of their choice.

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J.D. Vance and Peter Thiel Invest in Rumble, the Conservative-Friendly Alternative to YouTube

J.D. Vance and Peter Thiel

J.D. Vance, author of the best-seller Hillbilly Elegy and a potential GOP Senate candidate, along with Peter Thiel, the billionaire who supported Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency in 2016, both invested in Rumble — an alternative video platform conservatives are flocking to on the heels of ongoing allegations of censorship by YouTube.

The major investment will allow Rumble to expand its services and add more viewers, the company’s CEO Chris Pavlovski said in an interview with Fox Business.

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All Star Panelist Clint Brewer Ponders the Fate of the Republican Party

Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Clint Brewer in studio to discuss the removal of Liz Cheney as House conference chair and the future of the Republican Party.

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Alabama Becomes Latest State to End $300 Unemployment Bonus

Close up of federal check

Alabama will soon cease participating in the federal government’s unemployment insurance program that grants out-of-work Americans an extra $300 per week, the state’s governor said.

Republican Gov. Kay Ivey announced that the state would withdraw from the coronavirus relief program by June 19, 2021, arguing that the $300 in additional weekly payments was incentivizing people not to look for jobs. She suggested that the labor shortages reported in states across the country have been caused by the unemployment boost.

“As Alabama’s economy continues its recovery, we are hearing from more and more business owners and employers that it is increasingly difficult to find workers to fill available jobs, even though job openings are abundant,” Ivey said in a statement.

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Ron DeSantis Signs Bill Scrapping All of Florida’s Covid Restrictions

Gov. DeSantis discussing COVID-19 bill.

Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an executive order Wednesday scrapping all COVID-19 restrictions throughout the state and an accompanying bill that limits localities’ ability to enforce emergency precautions.

“I think that’s the evidence-based thing to do,” DeSantis said during a press conference Tuesday announcing the executive order. “I think folks are saying they need to be policing people at this point, if you’re saying that, then you’re really saying you don’t believe in the vaccines.”

DeSantis signed SB 2006, which says that any emergency orders can last no longer than six weeks. It gives him the authority to overrule cities that adopt restrictions deemed too harsh or unnecessary, and gives city and county commissions the power to overrule mayors.

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Florida House Rep. Randy Fine Talks Recent Florida Legislation of Big Tech, Critical Race Theory, Pro-Police, and Anti-Rioting

Thursday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Florida State Representative Randy Fine to the newsmakers line to discuss current legislation on the table in the Sunshine State that will address Big Tech, critical race theory, pro-police policy, and anti-rioting.

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Star News Network Washington Correspondent Neil McCabe on Trump Move to New Jersey and Next House Freedom Caucus Speaker

Wednesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Washington Correspondent for the Star News Network Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line to weigh in on his recent story about the House Freedom Caucus’s Speaker choice and the possible motivation behind Donald Trump’s move to New Jersey.

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Commentary: Behold DeSantis, Destroyer of Narratives

Ron DeSantis

Those who are looking for someone who could be a post-Trump bearer of the MAGA standard within the Republican Party have had a keen eye on Ron DeSantis for a while now.

And this week it’s becoming perfectly clear why.

DeSantis was the subject of a tired and constant phenomenon in American politics: the 60 Minutes hit piece. That happened on Sunday, with a report by Sharyn Alfonsi alleging that DeSantis was running a “pay-for-play” scheme surrounding the state of Florida’s vaccine distribution.

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DeSantis to Take Executive Action Against ‘Vaccine Passports’

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) vowed that he would issue an executive order forbidding local governments and businesses from requiring “vaccine passports” to show digital or physical proof of vaccination against COVID-19, The Hill reports.

At a news conference, the Florida governor announced he would introduce “an executive function, emergency function” against vaccine passports and requested the Republican state legislature draft a bill forbidding such passports.

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The Epoch Times Editor at Large Roger Simon on DeSantis, the New Federalism and Jokes at a Run on Metro City Council

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis

Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed The Epoch Times Editor-At-Large Roger Simon to the studio who discussed his most recent article on Governor Ron DeSantis, the concept of new federalism, and poked fun at a run for Metro City Council.

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The Epoch Times Senior Political Analyst Roger Simon Explains His Recent Article on Florida’s Ron DeSantis and Big Tech

Tuesday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Senior Political Analyst for The Epoch Times, Roger Simon in the studio to discuss his recent piece.

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Gov. DeSantis Says Flags in Florida Will be Lowered to Half-Staff to Honor Rush Limbaugh

During a press conference Friday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced that flags in Florida will be lowered to half-staff for conservative talk radio legend Rush Limbaugh once his funeral arrangements are made.

“I know they’re still figuring out the arrangements but what we do when there’s things of this magnitude, once the date of internment for Rush is announced, we’re going to be lowering the flags to half-staff,” the governor said. Limbaugh, who resided at his “Southern Command” oasis in Palm Beach Florida for the past ten years, died on Ash Wednesday after a year-long bout with  stage IV lung cancer. He was 70.

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DeSantis Calls Potential Travel Ban on Florida a ‘Ridiculous But Very Damaging Farce,’ a ‘Political Attack’ on the State

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis slammed the Biden Administration Thursday after White House officials floated to the media that it was considering a travel ban to and from the Sunshine State because of coronavirus concerns.

The Miami Herald reported on Wednesday that the White House was looking at “domestic travel restrictions as COVID mutation surges in Florida.”

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Ron DeSantis Introduces ‘Anti-Mob’ Legislation to Allow Floridians to Shoot Rioters And Looters

Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has proposed an “anti-mob” bill that would allow residents to shoot rioters and looters who target businesses following nationwide unrest.

The law would expand the state’s self defense law, which currently forbids “the use of force in defense of property,” by increasing what constitutes a “forcible felony,” according to the Miami Herald. DeSantis seeks to make looting or “interruption or impairment” of a business such a felony, thereby justifying deadly force to prevent it, the local outlet reported.

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Teachers Unions Sue DeSantis for Trying to Open Schools

The nation’s largest teachers unions filed a lawsuit Monday against the State of Florida over a department of education emergency order, which demanded schools reopen in August.

The Florida Education Association was joined by the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association in suing Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and Richard Corcoran, commissioner of the Florida Department of Education, according to a press release. DeSantis’ emergency order, issued on July 6 by the department of education, ordered all brick and mortar schools to open at least five days a week in August.

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DeSantis Signs School-Choice Bill Creating Florida’s First Tax-Funded Voucher Program

by John Haughey   It took combative committee hearings and marathon floor debates to overcome “third rail” resistance to expanding Florida’s school choice voucher program, but none of that rancor was evident Thursday at a private Miami Gardens school where Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the hard-fought bill into law. “I…

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DeSantis Wants Grand Jury to Look Into Broward County School Failures One Year After Shooting

by Neetu Chandak   Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday he wants a grand jury to look into possible mistakes made by Broward County Public Schools in addressing the Parkland, Florida, shooting. The grand jury would have more subpoena power and a greater scope compared to the Marjory Stoneman…

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Florida’s DeSantis Suspends Sheriff After Poor Response to Parkland Shooting

by Neetu Chandak   Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis officially suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel on Friday after his poor response to the Parkland high school shooting Feb. 14, 2018. Effective immediately, I am officially suspending Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel for his repeated failures, incompetence and neglect of…

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Ron DeSantis Wins Florida Gubernatorial Election After Andrew Gillum Concedes Again

Ron DeSantis

by Molly Prince   Former Republican Rep. Ron DeSantis defeated Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum on Saturday after an incredibly heated Florida gubernatorial race that remained contested for longer than a week after polls closed. Gillum ended the race via a message on Facebook, congratulating DeSantis for winning the governorship…

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Florida Counties Ditch Recount as Results Favor Republicans

by Molly Prince   Two counties in Florida did not submit the results of the election recount in the required time frame, which would have otherwise increased the Republican candidates’ leads over their Democrat challengers. Both Broward and Hillsborough Counties failed to meet Thursday’s deadline to submit the tallies from…

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Florida’s Recount Begins Amid Allegations Officials Tampered With Ballots

by Chris White   Florida’s secretary of state announced Saturday afternoon that the races for governor and senator would will be reviewed through a recount as Republicans allege officials tinkered with the results. Republican Gov. Rick Scott leads incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson by more than 12,500 votes. Former Republican…

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Gillum, Nelson Lawyers Fight to Include Non-Citizen’s Vote in Florida

by Luke Rosiak   Lawyers for Florida Democratic candidates Andrew Gillum and Bill Nelson both fought to prevent a non-citizen’s vote from being excluded Friday night, according to a transcript of a Palm Beach County Canvassing Board proceeding obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation. Michael Barnett, chairman of the…

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Andrew Gillum May Retract Concession as Recount Looms in Florida Governor Race

by Chuck Ross   Andrew Gillum may retract his concession in the Florida governor’s race. Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, conceded the race in a speech on Tuesday, after polls showed him down one percentage point to Republican Ron DeSantis, a former congressman who is close to President Trump. But…

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Trump Calls Andrew Gillum A Thief

by Chuck Ross   President Donald Trump called Florida gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum a thief Monday, an apparent nod at a corruption investigation that threatens to embroil the Tallahassee mayor. “In Florida there is a choice between a Harvard/Yale educated man named @RonDeSantisFL who has been a great Congressman and…

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‘There’s Is No Debate,’ Ron DeSantis is Racist Says AM Joy Guest Tiffany Cross

by Nick Givas   Managing editor of The Beat DC, Tiffany Cross called Florida gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis “racist” on MSNBC’s “AM Joy” Sunday and said there’s “no debate” about his racial beliefs. DeSantis is running against Democrat challenger Andrew Gillum and has starkly contrasted himself against Gillum’s left wing policies. He also accused…

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Commentary: Leftist Christians Target Florida Governor’s Race

by CHQ Staff   The Far-Left Democratic Party – you know the party that removed any mention of God from its platform and booed and jeered when a pro-forma mention of the Creator was added – has found a new cloak for its anti-religious liberty policies; newly re-energized Leftist Christians.…

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Florida GOP Governor Race: Ron DeSantis Ad Cuts Through the Clutter with Humor and Delivery

Ron Desantis

Florida Republican Congressman and candidate for Governor Ron DeSantis is having a great week. Not only did President Donald Trump endorse him a few weeks ago, the President followed up with a rally in Tampa, Florida Tuesday night to promote both DeSantis and current Governor Rick Scott — who is…

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Republicans Rising: GOPer Finally Steps In to Halt Mueller Witch-hunt

Republicans led by Florida Rep. Ron DeSantis are mulling an amendment that would dramatically cut funding for special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia-President Donald Trump ties. It’s about time someone in the GOP stepped up to the plate and beat back these ridiculous Russia investigations. DeSantis is suggesting that…

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