Jun 1, 2023

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Kicks Off his 2024 Presidential Campaign in Iowa Transcript

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Kicks Off his 2024 Presidential Campaign in Iowa Transcript
RevBlogTranscripts2024 ElectionFlorida Governor Ron DeSantis Kicks Off his 2024 Presidential Campaign in Iowa Transcript

Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis kicks off his 2024 election campaign in Des Moines, Iowa. Read the transcript here.

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Speaker 1 (00:00):


Speaker 2 (00:00):


Speaker 3 (00:00):


Speaker 4 (00:00):


Adam Greg (12:42):

Well, good evening. My name is Adam Greg and I’m incredibly honored to serve as your lieutenant governor here in the great state of Iowa. I want to say thank you to each and every one of you for coming out here to welcome Florida Governor Ron DeSantis back to our great state. Most importantly, I want to say thank you to each of you for participating in the caucus process. Yes, the caucuses themselves will probably happen on a cold and blustery night early next year. But the process has already started in rooms just like this where we have the opportunity to hear from the people who are seeking to lead our great country and hear their vision for our nation and to look them in the eye and shake their hand and perhaps ask a question. And through this process, we will begin to take our country back. What a privilege and what an opportunity we have. Thank you for doing your part. And now let’s take a moment to say thank you to our very gracious hosts here at Eternity Church. And I can think of no better way of saying thank you than to give a warm round of applause to Pastor Jesse Newman as he comes up to lead us in prayer.

Ron DeSantis (14:14):

All right. Some people in here still believe that America’s greatest days are still ahead of her. Amen. Come on, let’s pray together. God, we believe that our days, that our best days are not in the past, that America’s best days are still in front of her. And I pray that you keep raising up mighty conservative voices, bold voices, godly voices in our land. God, I pray that you start to wake churches up, wake pastors up, wake men and women of God up to the need to get up and speak the truth, to preach the truth. That truth is not subjective. It does not move. It is not progressive. It is anchored in the word of God. God, I pray that you raise up more women, that you raise up more men to speak up, to do the right thing, to care more about the truth than a tax break.

Lord, I pray for unity in the GOP that together as we fight against globalism and socialism and the idea is that morals and virtues are progressive. May we see a day soon where America stands tall among all the nations.

Crowd (15:31):


Ron DeSantis (15:32):

As a place that honors the Lord, that does the right thing even when it’s hard.

Crowd (15:36):


Ron DeSantis (15:37):

Lord, we pray for the Governor, we pray you bless him. We pray you bless his marriage. We pray you bless his children. We pray you give him wisdom and the courage to do what wisdom tells him. Not just to know what’s right but to do what’s right.

Crowd (15:51):


Ron DeSantis (15:52):

I pray that he would fight for godly virtues and godly values. I pray that as the fight gets intense, I pray for your protection over the Governor, over his marriage, over his family, that he stands for righteousness. And as the vicious onslaughts of those who plan to do wicked come against him, I pray they have no effect on him or his family or his campaign or his desire to stand up for the truth. God, I pray that all that the enemy means for harm, I believe you’re going to use it for good. We pray this in the name of Jesus. Could somebody say amen?

Crowd (16:29):


Ron DeSantis (16:31):

God bless you. And right now, it’s my pleasure to introduce our good man of God, Dan Gehlbach, one of our state representatives. Give it up for Dan Gehlbach.

Dan Gehlbach (16:42):

Thank you all for being here. Please rise for the pledge of allegiance. I think you see the flag. I pledge allegiance.

Crowd (17:00):

To the flag, of United States of America. And to the republic, for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Dan Gehlbach (17:15):

Thank you. I know you guys are all here to see my second favorite governor of the United States, but it’s my distinct honor to welcome to the stage my friend. And it’s been a great time to be in the state legislature with such a great leader that our state has. Please welcome to the stage my friend, your governor, Governor Kim Reynolds.

Kim Reynolds (17:45):

Oh, I love the energy. I love it. That’s what’s going to make a difference in next in 24. Thank you, representative Gehlbach for all that you do. Thank you for your service. It is so great to see so many faces in this crowd, so many politically engaged Iowan citizens who love the country, who worry about its future and will not rest until we take it back. I am so pleased and honored to have the opportunity tonight to introduce and to welcome back to the great state of Iowa, a friend, a fellow Republican governor. Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, as well as his amazing wife, first Lady Casey DeSantis. She is joining us this afternoon too. When Ron came to Iowa in early March, I kind of had a hunch, and I want you to know, it was just a hunch, that he might be back and here he is. To kick off his campaign, his first stop as a candidate as President of the United States of America. When Ron tells me that he’s going to be spending a lot of time here, I think it only makes sense because apparently we have some Iowa reporters who have taken up calling Iowa the Florida of the north. Ron, you’re going to feel right at home here in Iowa.

Now, I don’t think that they meant that as a compliment because apparently the work that we’ve been doing in Iowa and in Florida hurts kind of their liberal sensibilities. But I want to tell you what, I absolutely take it as a compliment because in both Iowa and in Florida, we are standing up for you, we are standing up for your values and most importantly, we are standing up for

Kim Reynolds (20:00):

… for your freedoms. So right now we’re in a battle for the soul of this great country and as the liberals sink to an insane new low every single day. Just a few short years ago, we could never have imagined the lengths that the left would go. We couldn’t have imagined how far they would go to indoctrinate our children and force their radical liberal values on us. We could not have imagined that Roe v. Wade would be overturned and that the left… But we could have never imagined that the left’s response would be, let’s kill babies up to the day of birth. We couldn’t have imagined that we would be faced with a global pandemic where the left’s response would be mandate vaccines, keep schools, churches, and businesses shuttered, and keep Americans locked down in their homes for as long as possible. We are living in unprecedented times and it is so critical that we do everything we can to make sure that a Republican takes back the White House in 2024.

So that process, I’m proud to say, starts right here in Iowa with the First in the Nation Caucus, and most importantly, it starts with each and every one of you. So I want you to continue to be engaged. We want you to vet the candidates so that we can make sure that the person that we select can undo the devastation that the Biden administration has unleashed on this great country. Tonight you’ll hear from a candidate who has shown us that he can, and all you have to do is look at his record.

Politicians, we tend to talk a lot, but only a few actually get things done. Only a few have the resolve and the willingness to stand strong for us, and that’s who Ron is at his core. He stood up against woke corporations and special interest. He made sure that parents had a seat at the table and protected children. And when he had the chance, he proudly signed a law that makes it illegal to stop a baby’s beating heart. The same Heartbeat Bill that I was proud to sign into law in 2018.

Before becoming the governor of the Sunshine State, and I do think that Ron might tell you is the Iowa of the Southeast, I’m pretty sure. So Ron, he served in Congress where he was a founding member of the Freedom Caucus, who really spent a lot of time bucking the establishment to do what was right for America. And before that, he proudly served his country in the military. He’s the father of three beautiful children and perhaps most important, he’s the husband of Casey DeSantis.

And if you don’t already know, Casey is a force in her own right. As First Lady, she’s launched four major initiatives including a wonderful program called Hope Florida, where she, really, the state, teams up with the private sector as well as faith-based organizations to help single parents get back on their feet and off of welfare. A cancer survivor herself, she has also championed cancer research programs and continues to travel the state to educate and provide hope to others. And for all you moms out there, she’s done that while raising three children. So I am so pleased that they’re back in Iowa and I have another hunch they’re going to be here a lot. So, because if I know anything about these two, it’s that they will not be outworked. So please join me in welcoming to the stage Ron and Casey DeSantis.

Speaker 5 (24:43):


Ron DeSantis (25:10):

Hello Iowa. It is great to be back and it’s great for me to report that our Great American comeback starts by sending Joe Biden back to his basement in Delaware. I mean, he spent so much of his time as president on vacation, we might as well make it permanent.

Now, it is great to be back. Now, a few weeks ago we were in state. We were not actually scheduled to come to the Des Moines area, but before we decamp back to Florida, the weather was so nice that we felt we just had to come back and pay everyone a little bit of a visit. We appreciated that. I want to thank Pastor Newman for hosting us here at Eternity Church. Thank you so much. And thanks to your governor, Kim Reynolds, and all the legislators in Iowa who’ve worked to support her agenda. They’ve done incredible work in safeguarding freedom in Iowa and Kim mentioned that they get a lot done, really bold. People have said that Iowa is the Florida of the North, but I’ll tell you, it very well may be that Florida is the Iowa of the Southeast. Iowa setting the standard. You all should be proud about what they’re doing.

Now, I wish the elites in Washington DC would take a page out of the Iowa playbook, but instead they have ignored what works and they continued to plunge this nation into the abyss. Our country is going in the wrong direction. We can see it and we can feel it. Our southern border has collapsed. The Mexican drug cartels have more control over what goes on at the border than our own United States government.

Millions of illegal aliens have poured into this country, including criminal aliens and even individuals on the terrorist watch list. The massive amounts of fentanyl that the cartels are bringing in has killed tens of thousands of our fellow Americans.

Look at the economy, the Biden administration is doing all it can to make it harder for the average family to make ends meet and to attain and maintain a middle class lifestyle. The bill for the massive borrowing, spending, and debt, and record printing of money by the Fed, that’s falling on the American people. Our dollar has lost almost 20% of its value in the last four years.

Look at energy. You would think that with these economic problems with inflation, you may want to tap into more domestic energy. But no, Biden is deliberately trying to kneecap our energy production and he’s trying to force Americans into electric vehicles, which will make us more reliant on China, who provides most of the materials for the batteries.

We have a bureaucracy that our founding fathers would find unrecognizable. It is an unaccountable, weaponized, administrative state that unevenly wields authority depending on its targets. Two different sets of rules depending on whether you’re a member in good standing of elite society or not. If Hunter were a Republican, he would’ve been in jail years ago.

American cities have been hollowed out by spiking crime due to weak, ideologically driven policies that intentionally allow criminals to roam the streets. We’ve also witnessed the steady advance of a new form of leftism that has infected institutions across our nation. This form of cultural Marxism sows divisions in our society and devalues merit and achievement. This woke ideology represents a war on truth itself.

We have just endured years of attempts to impose medical authoritarianism on our country, including President Biden’s attempt to deny Americans the right to put food on the table and earn a living if they decline to take an mRNA Covid shot. The lockdowns and the mandates have done incalculable damage to our country and the effects are still with us to this very day. And as we commemorated Memorial Day yesterday, we are especially mindful of the 13 service members who lost their lives in Afghanistan due to Joe Biden’s dereliction of duty.

These failed policies result from elites in the political class who ignore the concerns of the American people and who put their interest above our nation’s interest. How is it that five of the seven wealthiest counties in the United States of America are suburbs of Washington DC? DC doesn’t produce much of anything besides mountains of debt and loads of hot air. These elites are not enacting an agenda to represent us. They are imposing their agenda on us via the federal government, via corporate America, and via our own education system, all for their benefit and all to our detriment.

But it does not have to be this way. American decline is not inevitable, it is a choice. And we must choose a new direction for our country. We must choose a path that will lead to a revival of American greatness. We must restore sanity to our nation. We need fiscal and economic sanity. Stop pricing hardworking Americans out of a good standard of living through inflationary borrow, print, and spend policies. Embrace American produced energy so we can be completely energy independent.

We now see Washington has now cooked up their latest quote, debt deal. And I can tell you this, our nation was careening towards bankruptcy before the debt deal, and it will still be careening towards bankruptcy after this debt deal. This is green lighting 4 trillion in new debt in less than two years. It took us almost 200 years to get to 4 trillion in debt in the first place. It locks in inflated Covid era levels of spending and it keeps 98% of the 87,000 new IRS agents that Joe Biden instituted. This is not going to solve our nation’s fiscal problems.

I can tell you in Florida we run budget surpluses. We have a $1.2 trillion GDP in Florida. We’d be the 13th largest economy in the world if we were our separate country, and yet with 1.2 trillion economy, our state debt is only $17 billion. Second lowest per capita state debt anywhere in these United States. And so it can be done, you just have to be willing to make choices and stop passing the buck to subsequent generations to clean up your mess. Now, restoring sanity means we can’t have every major institution in our country going on ideological joyrides. We have to be guided by reality, by facts, and by our enduring principles. Merit must trump identity politics. And no American should have to compete in the woke Olympics just to get a job or just to get into school.

We also must return normalcy to our communities. We are a sovereign country and our borders must be respected. We cannot have foreigners pouring into our country illegally by the millions, and we cannot allow drug cartels to poison our population with fentanyl. Law and order must be maintained, especially in American cities. We cannot permit the inmates to run the asylum. We must reject Soros backed prosecutors who refuse to enforce the law. And we must always support the men and women of law enforcement who work hard to keep us safe.

We also must reestablish integrity in our institutions and that includes our military. I’m a Navy veteran. I’m proud to have served… Proud to have done a tour in Iraq. And it was something that I had a lot of opportunities. I was a blue collar kid growing up. My mom was a nurse. My father worked for Nielsen Television ratings where they put the TV boxes on the Nielsen families back in the day. I was given nothing. I had to earn what I got. I worked minimum wage jobs just to get through school, but I was able to put myself in a position to have a lot of opportunities. I could have made a lot of money, but this was after 9/11. I felt that people should serve. And so I volunteered to do that.

And you know, look back at the loss of potential income, but wearing the cloth of your country and serving in an honorable institution that’s worth more than anything money can buy. And I know so many people feel that way throughout the years. And it pains me when we see revered institutions like our very own military become more concerned with matters that are not central to the mission, whether it’s global warming or gender ideology or pronouns, morale is declining and recruiting is suffering. We need to eliminate these distractions and we need to get focused on the core mission at hand.

We also can’t have true constitutional government if the most important issues in our society are decided not by our elected representatives but by some nameless, faceless bureaucrat working in Washington DC. Reestablishing integrity to our institutions means we must reinvigorate our constitutional system by returning the government to its rightful owners, we the people. There should be no social or economic transformation without representation. We must reassert truth as the foundation of our society. Common sense can no longer be an uncommon virtue in our society.

And I’ll tell you in Florida, we prove that all of this can be done. We chose facts over fear. We chose education over indoctrination. We chose law and order over rioting and disorder. We in the State of Florida, held the line when freedom hung in the balance. We refused to allow our state to descend into some type of Faucian dystopia where people’s livelihoods were destroyed and their freedoms were curtailed. No, we protected people’s rights. And, like Governor Kim Reynolds, we ensured our kids had the right to be in school in person. In Florida, we chose freedom over Faucism, and we are better for doing that.

Now we can look back at that and say, “Well, of course wouldn’t you want to do that?” But at the time we faced relentless opposition. We faced opposition from media, from the left, from bureaucrats, even from some of our fellow Republicans. People told me, “Governor, what you’re doing, you’re cutting against the grain, you’re getting hammered. You’re not going to be long for this world politically if you keep doing what you’re doing.” But leadership is about doing what’s right, even in the face of intense criticism, even when people are coming at you. You got to be willing to stand all by yourself if that’s what it calls for. And I told myself, my job as a leader is to put the interests and the jobs of the people I represent ahead of protecting my own political hide. And I didn’t know what

Ron DeSantis (40:00):

… what was going to happen politically, but I was willing to let the chips fall where it may, because as long as I can look in that mirror and know that I did the right thing for the right reasons, I figured it would all work out in the end. And sure enough, we had some tough going politically for a while. We were getting hammered and low and behold, when you do the right thing, regardless of poles or regardless of wherever the wind’s blowing, people appreciate you. They know when you stood up for them. When it’s not easy and you do it, that’s when they go to war for you.

At the end of the day, leadership is not about entertainment. It’s not about building a brand, it’s not about virtue signaling. It is about results and in Florida, we didn’t lead with merely words. We followed up our words with deeds and we have produced a record of accomplishment that we would put up against anybody in this country. We have in Florida barred land purchases like farmland by the CCP and related entities, not happening in Florida. We have signed legislation to kneecap so-called ESG in the state of Florida. No ESG in our pension system, no social credit scores, and no woke banking that discriminates against conservatives.

We signed the heartbeat bill, the strongest pro-life protections in modern Florida history. We’ve enacted record-breaking tax relief, including, look, we don’t have a state income tax. I know Kim’s trying to get there. You guys should try it. It works very well and we’re proud of not having that. So we have to find other ways to give people relief. And so part of this package is a bunch of family friendly provisions. Now in the state of Florida, permanently no sales tax on any items involving raising babies, no diaper tax, no wipes, cribs, strollers, clothes, you name it, tax free. We’ve enacted universal school choice in Florida. The money will follow the student and the parent can find the school of their choice. When I became governor, we inherited maybe the most liberal state Supreme Court anywhere in the country. Well, I’ve since then appointed seven conservative justices and we now have the most conservative state Supreme Court in the country. We have fortified Second Amendment rights by enacting constitutional carry legislation. We’ve signed tough on crime policies including strong bail requirements, tough penalties for fentanyl dealers, and authorizing the death penalty for pedophiles. While jurisdictions in this country were defunding law enforcement, Florida stood up and backed law enforcement, we have enacted for three years in a row, $1,000 bonuses for every sworn law enforcement and firefighter in the entire state of Florida. And we now have a program that when cops leave places like Philly or New York or Chicago and they’re recruited to come to Florida, they’re met not with derision, but with a $5,000 signing bonus because we appreciate what they’re doing. Florida has fought back against the plague of Soros PAC district attorneys who believe it’s up to them to determine which laws to enforce and which laws to ignore. When we had one of those prosecutors in Florida that said he wasn’t going to enforce laws he didn’t like, I removed him from his post, he is gone. We have opposed illegal immigration by banning sanctuary cities, cracking down on human smuggling, deploying troops to help on the southern border, and even sending illegal aliens to Martha’s Vineyard. We have signed legislation prohibiting the use of a central bank digital currency in our state because we understand what they’re trying to do with that. We’ve also been the first state to eliminate DEI from our universities in Florida. They say it stands for diversity, equity, and inclusion, but the way it’s practiced, its ideology being imposed on all these institutions. The way it’s practiced, DEI better stands for discrimination, exclusion, and indoctrination. And that has no place in our public university system. We have taken action to ensure that Florida runs the most efficient and transparent elections anywhere in the country. We have banned ballot harvesting in the state of Florida. We have banned Zuckerbucks in the state of Florida, and we require voter ID not only in person, but if you want an absentee ballot, you have to show ID for that as well. And we are able to count 8 million votes by midnight on election night in this recent midterm election.

We had the privilege recently to sign legislation rejecting the Biden Administration’s attempt to unconstitutionally impose the WHO lockdown treaty. Florida will not recognize any of those provisions in our state. We’ve protected medical freedom by banning mandates for COVID shots, other MNRA and emergency use vaccines, and by being the first state in America to ban gain of function research. And of all those accomplishments, while I’m proud of all that, maybe the thing that we’re most proud of in Florida is that we have taken a very strong stand for the idea that the purpose of our schools is to educate kids, not to indoctrinate kids. And that we have responsibility to protect parents rights and to protect our children. And it’s fundamental for me, obviously as governor, I have to look to see education in our state because I know how important it is for the future of our state, but I also see these issues through the lens of a dad, of a six, a five and a three-year-old. And my wife and I oftentimes discuss the challenges that parents are facing. Maybe I missed it, but when I was growing up, I didn’t see an agenda to try to jam all this stuff down the kids’ throats. Kids were just kids back then and everyone agreed they were off limits for any adult stuff and we didn’t even go down this road. Well, now we’re in a different spot. And so this is a big deal for my wife and I, but I am happy to have her come up and say a few words because she’s a force and she’s a great protector of children. Let it rip.

Kim Reynolds (48:32):

Thank you. My fellow mamas, I saw you standing up. Well, I’m happy to be here and I’m happy to fight with the governor and I’m also happy to fight on behalf of the mamas across the country and I’m also pretty happy to be here because I get to talk to somebody older than four, which is an accomplishment for me. By the way, if you wondering why my voice is a little bit hoarse, well, it’s because I’ve been negotiating with a three-year-old all day today as to why they cannot color with permanent marker on the dining room table or in the bathroom or on the state wallpaper in the governor’s mansion. So that’s kind of why my, but you know, our kids six, five, and three are the light of our lives. I mean, they are the reason why we fight. They give us so much happiness, a little exhaustion now and again, but don’t think for a second when the governor doesn’t come home at the end of a long day, I don’t hand them to him.

Although it is really funny is when he comes in at 8 o’clock, after a long day, he always wants to bring something maybe from Casey’s from somewhere else and it’s usually a sweet treat. So it’s usually when they’re going towards their bedtime routine that he decides to come in with a cupcake, which is nice, but it’s okay. So listen, I get questions all the time about the governor and one of the questions I get asked more than anything else is they say, we see him as a fighter on TV. Do we know whether he is going to be a fighter when he goes up to Washington, DC and he is taking on the swamp? And I can tell you, it’s a good question because I get frustrated too with all of these people in elective office who say they’re going to go do something, then they go up to Washington, they go rogue. They don’t hold true to what they told the people that they would do. And it’s frustrating, but I can tell you Ron DeSantis always stands up for what’s right. He never backs down. He says what he’s going to do and he gets it done.

There’s a lot of examples that I can point to, and he talked about it earlier, but I think this is really important because when you look at COVID, the world descended upon Florida. You had the corporate media, the left, the White House, Fauci, Birx, all prognosticating that every bad thing would happen unless the governor followed their dictates and their politicized unscientific orthodoxy, but he held the line in defense of the liberties of the people he represented. He never backed down. He took their livelihoods and their happiness above his own. And he said, just as he said earlier, because I love when he says this, “It’s my job to defend your job even at the end of the day if it means that I lose my job.”

So all of this was in the face of unrelenting attacks. You couldn’t even turn on the TV for like five minutes and everybody, they were always attacking Florida and the governor. So how do you know that he’s going to be able to go up to Washington, hold the line, stay strong, and stand up for what’s right? Because when it matters, when it really, really matters, when our fundamental principles are on the line, our God given rights are on the line and you have to make a decision in the moment that matters, that forever impacts the people, their lives that you were there to represent. That’s why you ran for office. And you know you have two paths, you can take the path of least resistance. You can subcontract your leadership to the medical bureaucracy. You can aim for self-preservation. You can be more interested in your political “career” or do you hold the line? Do you defend the rights of the people, their ability to earn a living, to be with their loved ones, especially in their final moments? Do you fight for our children to be in school to breathe without a mask forced on their face?

No, do you ensure that people have the choice as to whether or not they want to take an mRNA vaccine and certainly not make it contingent upon their job? Because at the end of the day, it is what you do in the moment that matters. And I can tell you, the governor, Ron DeSantis is in it for the right reasons, to defend the idea of America, to ensure that our children, our six, five, and three-year-old who are currently destroying the governor’s mansion, I will tell you that, but grandma’s, she’s on the job. But to ensure that our children, your children, and your grandchildren have the opportunity to live up to their God-given potential, and the governor is going to show the world that the best of America is yet to come. God bless you and thank you for the honor to be here.

Ron DeSantis (53:52):

Well, thank you for that. That was wonderful. And you haven’t seen the half of all that she’s done for our state. And she’s been an inspiration to so many people. And she did in our last campaign for governor, she created a million mamas movement. And the idea was to sign up 1 million mamas throughout the state of Florida. Now, because it’s Florida, we also qualified grandmamas too, but it’s good. She ended up signing up 1.1 million mamas for our, and I think the parents of this country are really going to rise up in 2024. I think this is going to be a central issue. Do you support the rights of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children? Do you believe parents have a right to know what curriculum is being used in their school or don’t you? Because the left doesn’t believe they have that right, the left thinks the parents should butt out.

Now, why would you not want the parents involved? I’ll tell you, most teachers know if the parent’s involved, the student’s going to do better than if the parent isn’t involved. And the reason they don’t want the parent involved is not because of student achievement. They know if the parents are involved, that represents an impediment to them realizing their agenda and using the schools to pursue an agenda. So in Florida, we’ve enacted legislation to protect parents’ rights including curriculum transparency. So parents have a right to know what books are being used, what the curriculum is. And if it’s inappropriate for age or violates Florida standards, they can blow the whistle.

Now the media will say, if there is a book that contains hardcore pornography in a fifth grade classroom, if a parent wants that removed that that’s “banning” a book. And let me tell you, this is a hoax to talk about book bans. That’s what they’re doing. They’re creating a hoax because you have to make decisions about curating which books are in a library or which books are in a classroom. And of course, using your tax dollars, those decisions should be age appropriate for the students involved. And so what I did, because they’re talking about all this, we did a press conference and we called it exposing the book ban hoax. And before I had the parents come off, before I even said anything, we played on a video screen, the images and some of the text of what the parents objected to.

The local news that were covering it had to cut their feed because they said it was too graphic. Well, if it’s too graphic for the 6 o’clock news, how’s it okay for a 10-year-old school child? Let’s get real here. Let’s stop with the indoctrination and let’s focus on education. And to that end, Florida’s led the way by eliminating critical race theory in our K through 12 schools. We’re not teaching kids to hate this country or to hate each other with your tax dollars. No, we’re going to teach our kids what the Constitution is all about. We’re going to teach civics. We’re going to teach them what it means to be an American. Because after all, we’re graduating these kids, they’re going to be citizens of our republic. They need to have an adequate foundation to know what that means.

We can’t graduate a listless vessel that has no idea of what American freedom is all about. And we’ve also to make sure that that message is received, Florida, we set aside one day every year. I think we’re the only state that does this to teach students about the evils of communist regimes throughout history. We teach the truth about Marxism and Leninism and we’re going to keep doing it. We’ve also led the way, and Iowa’s been right there with us and recently has done a lot on this of eliminating gender ideology in our schools. It is wrong. It is wrong for a teacher to be telling a young student that they may have been born in the wrong body or that their gender is a choice. We don’t allow this in our schools and we don’t now, in Florida, we’ve banned teachers from forcing students to choose pronouns. Some of these schools around the country, they want a second-grader to choose pronouns. We are not competing in the pronoun sweepstakes in the state of Florida. Now, I can tell you that the parents in the state of Florida were very happy that we took those stands. The media was not happy about that. The left was not happy about that. And there was a little business that you may have heard of in Florida that also wasn’t happy about that named Disney. And people told me, they said, “Listen, the media’s coming after you, the left, but if Disney weighs in, they’re the 800 pound gorilla, you better watch out. They’re going to steamroll you.” Well, here I stand. I’m not backing down one inch.

We run the state of Florida. They do not run the state of Florida. I know all these Republicans are lining up against me to take the side of Disney, but I’ll tell you this, we stand for the protection of our children. We will fight those who seek to rob them of their innocence. And on that point, there will be no compromise. It

Ron DeSantis (01:00:01):

It is also wrong for a swimmer to compete for three years on the men’s team and then switch to the women’s team and then be named Women’s National Champion. That not only takes away opportunities from our girls and our women athletes, and as the father of two daughters, that’s very important for me, but it’s also asking us to be complicit in a fraud. It is not true that that is the women’s champion, and we are not going to accept things that are not true in this country.

And it’s sad we even have to say this, but it is wrong for physicians to perform sex change operations on minors. That is mutilation, and physicians who commit such acts in Florida not only lose their medical license, they go to jail.

So with getting all of that done that we have in Florida, I can report the State of Florida’s thriving. We’re the fastest growing state in these United States. We ranked number one in net in-migration and have for a number of years. We ranked number one in new business formations. We are recently ranked number one in education by US News. We are number one for parental involvement in education. Our crime rate is at a 50-year low, and we have one of the lowest tax and debt per capita rates in the entire United States.

And so the point of all that is when we say that we will do something, it is not fluff. We follow through, and we produce results. And so as President, I pledge to be an energetic executive that will take these important issues head on and deliver results. We will reverse Biden policies that have harmed our economy, and we’ll build an economy where working Americans can achieve a good standard of living. Small business, not big business, needs to be the focus of our economy. COVID lockdown policies help the large corporations, and they hurt the mom-and-pops. The large businesses are bigger than they were prior to COVID.

We also cannot allow the quest for short-term profit to trump the long-term national interests like our elites have done with the Chinese Communist Party for more than a generation. We need to rebuild critical infrastructure and manufacturing capability in this country. We cannot be dependent on China for critical goods and materials. As a Republican, I’m frustrated on things like the border, because I’ve been listening to these politicians talk about securing the border for years and years and years. And I could tell you if I’m President, this will finally be the time where we bring this issue to a conclusion. We will reestablish the sovereignty of this nation. We will declare a national emergency about the border. We’ll shut the border down. We’ll actually construct a border wall. We’ll end mass migration, and we will hold the Mexican drug cartels accountable for murdering American citizens.

We also pledge to usher in a reckoning for the federal government’s disastrous COVID policies. From lockdowns to VAX mandates to fiscal and monetary measures, the policies eroded freedom and they imposed great harms on American society. We desperately need accountability so this never happens to our country again. We will not allow malignant ideology to be imposed on our society. We will kneecap ESG, we will nix central bank digital currency, and we will fight back against things like cancel culture. We will never surrender to the Woke mob, and we will leave Woke ideology in the dust bin of history.

Now, Joe Biden has politicized the military and caused recruiting to plummet. We will eliminate ideological agendas from the military. We will refocus on the military’s core mission, and we will reverse these poor recruiting trends. I don’t want to have any more veterans come up to me, which they do frequently nowadays, and say they would not advise a young person to join today’s military. We need to change that if we want our country to be strong again.

And speaking of strength … And speaking of strength, we need to recognize that the Chinese Communist Party is the primary threat facing our nation internationally. We need to have a strong military to counter that threat. China’s been empowered by elites in our own country for decades. They continue to build a strong military capability, and they are seeking to eclipse America as the world’s leading superpower. We cannot allow our kids and grandkids to grow up in a century that is somehow a Chinese century. It needs to continue to be an American century.

Biden has weaponized the power of the administrative state to advance his left wing agenda. We will reconstitutionalize the executive branch, and we will bring this administrative state to heal once and for all. Now, this is not easy to do, and this power has accumulated over many, many decades, and it requires a disciplined, energetic president, who will spit nails and fight the needed battles every single day over an eight-year period. You can’t get cowed by the left, you can’t worry about what the media is going to say. You need to start cleaning house on day one. And if you are faced with a destructive bureaucrat in your midst, like a Fauci, you do not empower somebody like Fauci. You bring him into the office, and you tell him to pack his bags, “You are fired.”

And let’s just be clear. It really does take two terms as president to be able to finish this job. The bureaucracy is so entrenched that I think we can bring George Washington back, and I don’t think he could fix it in one single four-year term. But we must get the job done, because if we do not reconstitutionalize this government, we are not going to have constitutional government anymore. The Bible teaches us that God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble. A leader must have humility to know that he can’t do it alone. It’s a team effort. You can make the best decisions in the world, and I recognize this as governor when I became Governor of Florida, you can have great policies, you can make good decisions, but you need to have a cadre of people with you that share your values and will put the mission first.

And you can’t just recycle people from Washington DC. We need to inspire Americans from around the country to maybe pick up your family and move to the nation’s capital for 2, 4, 6 or 8 years, because we need people who live in the country to come out to DC to reassert the right of we, the people to run our own government. DC has imposed its will on us for far too long. It’s time we impose our will on Washington, DC, and you can’t do any of this if you don’t win. There is no substitute for victory. We must put an end to the culture of losing that has infected the Republican Party of recent years.

Not in Iowa, not in Florida, but in way too many places, the tired dogmas of the past are inadequate for a vibrant future. We must look forward, not look backwards. We must have the courage to lead, and we must have the strength to win because the stakes couldn’t be higher. I believe that if we make this election a referendum on the failures of Joe Biden and if we provide a positive alternative for the American people, that we will win the election, not just for President, but for House, for Senate, and we will sweep into Washington with a chance to do great things.

But if we get distracted, if we allow the election to become about other things other than Biden’s failures, if he’s able to hibernate in his basement for the whole campaign and not have to answer tough questions, well, then we may be in danger of seeing a Democrat sweep in 2024. And here’s what they will do if they sweep all of the offices, House, Senate and Presidents.

They will pack the US Supreme Court, and they will erase the conservative majority that is currently on the Supreme Court. They will make DC a state to guarantee two additional Democrat senators virtually for life. They will abolish the electoral college, and they will eliminate voter ID in every state in this country and mandate that ballot harvesting be permitted in every state in this country.

That is not an agenda that is speaking to the aspirations of the average American family. I don’t even think they would claim that it’s an agenda that’s speaking to those aspirations. No, that’s an agenda that is trying to render the conservative part of the country to be second-class citizens. And if we allow them to do that, it will be very difficult for us to claw back and claw out of that hole.

So my pledge to you is this. If you nominate me as your presidential candidate, set your clock to January 20th, 2025 at high noon on the west side of the Capitol, because I’ll have this left hand on the Bible, and I will have that right hand in the air, and I will be sworn in as the 47th president of these United States. No excuses. I will get the job done.

We have a lot of work to do to ensure our country gets back on track. I ask you to join me on this mission. We have it within our power to reverse our nation’s decline. Together, we will fight the good fight. We will finish the race, and we will keep the faith. And when we do, we will bring back our great American comeback. Thank you all. God bless you so much. We appreciate it. Thank you so much. Thank you. Thank you very much.

Speaker 6 (01:12:55):


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