DeSantis leaves his mark in Florida in the first days as governor


Historically, newly elected politicians have 100 days to fill a position and start working before their actions and policies are reviewed and badyzed.

But the new governor of Florida took less than two weeks to establish his agenda and offer a clear vision of how he intends to govern.

During his first 10 days in office, Ron DeSantis led a campaign of astonishment and commotion throughout the state. He appointed two conservative judges from the state Supreme Court, visited a hurricane disaster zone (twice) and released a broad environmental agenda in his first 48 hours alone.

On Friday, a day after announcing plans to revise the state's medical marijuana regulations, he ordered the removal of Palm Beach County chief of elections Susan Bucher, the third politician who has suspended since taking office on March 8. January. And then he explained a decision. to terminate almost four dozen of his predecessor's nominations to state boards.

Digital access for only $ 0.99

For the most complete local coverage, subscribe today.

Although he has barely had time to establish himself, DeSantis is already forging a reputation as a constitutionalist attempt to keep promises and crush the politicians who come across him. He even impressed his critics and gathered the Republican party that surrounded him, while moving away from the predecessor Rick Scott.

"If we look at the campaign promises we made, the expectation of all Floridians, regardless of whether they voted for us or not, we were going to lead and we were going to act," said Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nunez, who did so. Much played an unusually active role in what is traditionally a ceremonial post, he said in an interview. "He's serious about doing things, it's not just campaign promises and rhetoric."

Whether intentionally or not, much of DeSantis' initial agenda has focused on solving the problems that Scott left behind.

On Friday, he rescinded the November 30 suspension of Scott from Broward County Supervisor of Elections, Brenda Snipes, who was dismissed from her position despite her stated plans to resign after a controversial recall. DeSantis, who otherwise would have had to hold a hearing on his expulsion, said he wanted to "go beyond this controversy." Then, a few hours later, he rescinded 46 of Scott's appointments to the state boards, though he indicated that He is going to rename some of the same people.

Those moves came a day after DeSantis held a press conference in Orlando to say he would put aside the state's legal challenges regarding the ability to smoke medicinal cannabis, all, but ending a legal battle that the Department of Health Scott had been spared after the pbadage of 2016. A constitutional amendment approving the use of medical marijuana.

"We have a lot of fish to fry in Florida," said DeSantis, who also wants to loosen commercial marijuana regulations. "The last thing I want to do is clean up something that should have happened two years ago."

DeSantis, who was widely praised by Democrats after the announcement, has also been praised by the opposition for announcing on his third day in office that he would push to secure an additional $ 1.5 billion for the restoration of the Everglades and water resources during his tenure. four years term. Its environmental platform, which includes a new office to address the consequences of climate change, gained additional importance after the toxic algae bloomed on Lake Okeechobee and the red tide bloomed under Scott's watch.

DeSantis also requested the resignation of the entire board appointed by Scott from the South Florida Water Management District.

Still, although the new governor of Florida has been cleaning up Scott's footprint in the state when he places his own footprints on the government, DeSantis and Scott, now a US senator, insist that there is no friction between the two. mens.

"While the press corps and some of the Tallahbadee members seem to be trying to try to create a conflict between Senator Scott and Governor DeSantis, that is not a game we are interested in playing," said Chris Hartline, Scott's spokesman. "When he was governor, Senator Scott made the decisions he made based on the law and the information he had at that time."

Fight or not, DeSantis has certainly shown a different style to Scott, who relied on talking points during press conferences, routinely avoided responding to reporters' questions and relegated his top lieutenants to supporting roles .

DeSantis has convened regular press conferences and has been willing to give more details about their positions. Núñez has accompanied him in all his "big" announcements. And he said he was referring to what he said when he told lawmakers that he respected his role in government when, instead of declaring changes to Florida's marijuana policies, he gave the Legislature time to address the issue through the legislation

The new governor of Florida is also benefiting, in a way, from the fruit that Scott left behind.

On his first Friday in office, DeSantis and the newly-built Florida Cabinet pardoned the Four of Groveland, a group of four men who were unjustly accused of rape in 1949 and then killed, tortured or unjustly imprisoned. The Florida Legislature has asked the Florida Cabinet to forgive the men in 2017.

DeSantis then flew to South Florida and suspended Broward Sheriff Scott Israel, whom Republicans in the House of Representatives had asked Scott to suspend months ago because of the police's problematic response to the mbad shooting in the United States. Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school. The decision was strongly supported by the families of more than half a dozen victims of gunfire, including some who campaigned against DeSantis.

"Anyone who follows me knows that I call things as I see them. It is also known that I worked against. @RonDeSantisFL", Parkland's father tweeted, Fred Guttenberg. "Having said that, I must say that, in general, he is having an impressive start as governor."

Guttenberg is not alone.

Carlos Guillermo Smith, one of the state's most liberal legislators and one of DeSantis' most ardent critics last year, declared "progress" after DeSantis announced his marijuana status. "Two weeks almost down, A LOT way to go," tweeted former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gwen Graham, "but please, keep it up."

The first two weeks of DeSantis, which included an announced trip to Israel and the appointment of the first Hispanic woman in the Supreme Court of Florida, were also well received within her own party. DeSantis was present on January 12 when the Republican Party of Florida elected Senator Joe Gruters as its new president. According to Florida Politics, Gruters said in his acceptance speech that the party was now "Ron DeSantis's party".

The first days of DeSantis have not been perfectly smooth. He confronted the press after his staff invited reporters to a hurricane disaster recovery meeting in the Panhandle just to close the doors. And its environmental deployment was greeted with skepticism by the Senate Democrats, who said that, for now, its "audacious" platform has been mainly words.

More confrontations are on the way.

The elimination of Bucher on Friday may, in fact, point to DeSantis' first clear battle with the Florida Democrats. Terrie Rizzo, the president of the state party, called the act "an excessive gap and a politically motivated movement to consolidate power and obstruct the will of the people."

But for now, DeSantis' honeymoon is in full swing. And Nunez said the giddy pace of the governor will not necessarily diminish in week three.

"There are certainly opportunities for much more action," he said.

Source link