Disney's feud with DeSantis is over — and it's donating to Republicans again


  • Disney is once again donating to politicians — just months after ending its feud with Ron DeSantis.

  • The Florida theme park is even donating to Republicans who voted for the state’s so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

  • Disney executives’ opposition of the bill sparked a yearslong conflict with DeSantis.

Since ending its feud with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Disney has wasted no time donating to Republicans again.

The Walt Disney Co. gave more than $87,000 worth of in-kind donations to political committees, including Republican lawmakers, in the months of April and May, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

That’s an about-face for the House of Mouse, which had paused political donations as it brawled with DeSantis.

The yearslong feud first started in 2022 when Disney executives publicly opposed DeSantis’ bill — which has since been signed into law — that restricts discussions of gender and sexual orientation in classrooms.

Critics called the legislation the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

In response to their opposition, DeSantis grabbed control of the board that oversees Disney World’s special tax district, renaming it the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District and replacing all of its board members with his own.

Disney, in turn, sued, arguing it was being politically targeted; DeSantis’ board sued right back.

But the legal back-and-forth ended in March when DeSantis’ hand-picked board agreed to settle the lawsuit brought by Disney.

Now, ironically, Disney is providing benefits to Republican lawmakers who voted in favor of the so-called “Don’t Say Gay,” bill, the Sentinel reported.

That includes an in-kind donation worth more than $16,000 to Florida Farmers and Ranchers United, a group associated with Republican Rep. Josie Tomkow, campaign finance records show. Tomkow voted for the bill officially called the Parental Rights in Education Act.

Disney also gave around $10,000 each to two committees affiliated with Republican state Sen. Jason Brodeur and Republican state Sen. Joe Gruters, campaign finance records show. Both state lawmakers also supported the controversial bill.

Though Disney has resumed in-kind donations, Florida Democratic Senator Geraldine Thompson has said Disney headquarters has not yet approved monetary donations, the Sentinel reported.

Read the original article on Business Insider



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