DeSantis Lays Out Agenda to Retake School Boards at ‘Freedom Blueprint’ Event
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Republican Party of Florida won a historic victory in the 2022 midterm elections.
DeSantis and the Republican Party of Florida have said that they are not content with the victory and want to expand on their successes at the local level.
This week, DeSantis held a “Freedom Blueprint” event in Orlando where he laid out a plan to win school board races that he sees as critical to implement a conservative agenda in Florida’s education system.
🔴 LIVE: The Freedom Blueprint: Gov. Ron DeSantis Speaks in Orlando, Florida https://t.co/l42QW67s4B
— NTD News (@news_ntd) December 19, 2022
DeSantis and the Republican Party of Florida have repeatedly expressed frustration that while they are passing conservative legislation, local elected officials have abused their authority to defy state mandates.
Even in conservative communities, schools have implemented a progressive agenda, sometimes without parents’ knowledge.
“For too long, these school boards have not reflected the values of the communities that they were supposedly elected to serve,” DeSantis said.
A new Rasmussen poll shows a strong majority of Americans think Drag Queen Story Time is inappropriate for children.https://t.co/trn86OeRf9
— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) November 16, 2022
During the 2022 midterms, DeSantis took the unprecedented step of involving himself in school board races across the states, endorsing conservative candidates who will stand up to interest groups and teachers’ unions in favor of the interests of parents and students.
“We were just educating our voters about who shared our values and who didn’t — that’s it. We were confident once they had that information, they were going to be able to make the right decisions.”
“The school board races in 2024, I think, give us an opportunity to flip some more of these boards throughout the state of Florida,” DeSantis said at the Orlando event.
I show Ron DeSantis' school board endorsements did not simply flip a few rural counties, but ended up with conservative representation in some of the largest counties in the state that cover most of the population. A success unlike anything we've seen. https://t.co/C4jc7gMUfD pic.twitter.com/GB6f8IsMFl
— Richard Hanania (@RichardHanania) December 8, 2022
DeSantis explained that school board members have beliefs on social issues and that the appropriate response to the Covid-19 pandemic was that is out of step with the majority of their constituents, saying that conservatives should highlight those issues to flip seats across the state.
“And I know there’s definitely been individual school board members who have been very obnoxious over these last few years, with how they handled COVID, masking and all these different things,” DeSantis elaborated, not offering examples of “obnoxious” board members.
“They’re free to do that, but they’re representing constituencies that agree with us on all these issues, not agree with them on those issues.”
Why are Democratic politicians acting like school closures are a huge political liability?
Well, because they are. Shifting schools to remote learning is opposed 30-66 in the latest Suffolk/USA Today poll. Even a majority of Democrats (52%) oppose.https://t.co/ZxrzBBWkzg pic.twitter.com/GzjTIhLgIj
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) January 11, 2022
Still, DeSantis believed that running on conservative ideas was not good enough and emphasized candidate quality in school board races.
“We need to make sure we have good candidates ready to go in a lot of these races, and we will help to illuminate the contrast in those races,” He said. “And I think you’re going to see really, really positive results in 2024.”
He also stated that if Republicans want to win in school board races, they should emphasize party unity over factionalism.
“We don’t need to have five conservatives run against one liberal in a race,” DeSantis cautioned, adding that “it’s not about any one individual” but “making sure these school boards reflect the values of the community and they’re not a tool of a special interest, partisan agenda.”
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