Trump Wins CPAC Poll While Support for DeSantis Grows

Former President Donald Trump won the CPAC 2022 straw poll for the 2024 presidential primary with Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) coming in second.

The poll, conducted from Thursday to Sunday with 2,564 attendees, shows that 59% of people said they would vote for Trump in the 2024 primary. DeSantis has less than half the support of Trump, 28% as the second-highest-ranking primary candidate.

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Commentary: The Left’s Anti-Intellectual Problem

Last week in the Atlantic, David Graham took aim at smart conservative politicians who play dumb. He declares at the beginning of his piece, “This is the age of smart politicians pretending to be stupid.” As evidence, he mainly cites Gov. Ron DeSantis, senatorial candidates J.D. Vance and Eric Greitens, and Sen. Josh Hawley.

Graham argues that these men belie their impressive degrees from Ivy League universities by aligning themselves with the populist conservative movement in some capacity. DeSantis does not brag about COVID booster shots, Vance is critical of China and globalism, and Greitens and Hawley have doubts about the 2020 election. Surely, according to Graham, these must be poses to win over Trump supporters, not sincere positions stemming from valid objections. There’s just no way such educated people would actually believe what they’re pushing.

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Trucker ‘Freedom Convoy’ Sparks More Controversy After GoFundMe Refunds $10 Million

A Canadian movement of truckers protesting the country’s vaccine mandate has inspired a similar protest in the U.S., with a convoy expected to arrive at the nation’s capital next month. That movement, though, sparked controversy beyond its protest this weekend after a run-in with the popular online fundraiser, GoFundMe.

GoFundMe announced it would refund more than $10 million in donations to donors of the “Freedom Convoy” online fundraiser after threats of a fraud investigation from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. DeSantis threatened the investigation after GoFundMe reportedly froze the fundraising account Friday and said they would give the funds to another charity of Freedom Convoy’s choice.

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FDA Pulls Authorization for Antibody Treatment, Refuses to Answer Questions

SAN DIEGO (Jan 26, 2020) Lt. Cmdr. Raben Talvo, Naval Medical Center San Diego's (NMCSD) Office of Clinical Quality department head, administers the hospital’s first monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatment to a COVID-19-positive patient Jan. 26. Bamlanivimab, the mAb treatment, is administered under emergency use authorization (EUA) guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms in some adult and pediatric patients who are at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 symptoms. NMCSD's mission is to prepare service members to deploy in support of operational forces, deliver high quality healthcare services, and shape the future of military medicine through education, training, and research. NMCSD employs more than 6,000 active duty military personnel, civilians, and contractors in Southern California to provide patients withworld-class care anytime, anywhere. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Harley K. Sarmiento)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Monday unexpectedly pulled its Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19, dealing a blow to states like Florida which have been using the treatment effectively for months. 

“Without a shred of clinical data to support this action, Biden has forced trained medical professionals to choose between treating their patients or breaking the law,” Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said in response to the FDA’s decree. “This indefensible edict takes treatment out of the hands of medical professionals and will cost some Americans their lives. There are real-world implications to Biden’s medical authoritarianism – Americans’ access to treatments is now subject to the whims of a failing president.”

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Commentary: Escape to a Good State, but Don’t Ruin It

My elementary and high school teachers never did a good job of explaining American federalism. They left me and, I suspect, many of my fellow students confused. Perhaps they were a little confused themselves: If the federal government’s laws are supreme and can overrule state’s laws, why not just have all laws uniformly adopted at the federal level?

The federal government was not, of course, intended to be what it has become: the daily manager of every citizen’s life. The founders envisioned a federal government that remained in the background, available when it was necessary to get all the states fighting together to win a war, present to help explain a unified foreign policy, and above all to guarantee that goods and people could flow freely from one state to another with no impediment. (That last point is the reason for the interstate commerce clause.) Any national government more aggressive than that would never have been adopted by the liberty-minded states that had just won the Revolutionary War, and even that proved a hard sell: Two years and the addition of a Bill of Rights were required before a sufficient number of states were willing to ratify.

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Following Florida, Georgia Will Give $1,000 COVID Bonuses to First Responders

Silhouette of a firefighter in uniform

Gov. Brian P. Kemp (R) announced Monday that frontline public safety employees will receive $1000 bonuses for working during the COVID-19 pandemic, following Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) who similarly rewarded his public safety employees in May. 

“As long as I am governor and as long as these members of the general assembly here with me today continue to serve under this gold dome, we will stand with our public safety officials, period,” Kemp said of the decision. 

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States Prepare for Limits on Key COVID Treatment, Criticize Federal Rationing

Gov Ron SeSantis

Demand for a key COVID-19 treatment has led to a nationwide shortage, and as President Joe Biden’s administration rations how much each state receives, some governors are pushing back over having to decide how to use their limited supplies.

Many states are warning their residents that the treatment may not be available, and some are discussing offering it only to unvaccinated individuals. On Tuesday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, warned his states’ residents that there is “not going to be enough” of the treatment.

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Texas Starts Jailing Illegal Aliens on State Charges of Trespassing

Texas authorities announced on Thursday that state law enforcement has begun the process of arresting and jailing illegal aliens who cross the border on state trespassing charges, in a new effort to crack down on illegal immigration where the federal government is failing to do so, ABC News reports.

This latest step follows up on the promises of Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas), who first vowed in June to step up enforcement of immigration laws in the state in direct response to the Biden Administration’s open-borders approach. Abbott also declared that the state would continue building the border wall that was started by President Donald Trump, on which Biden had halted construction after taking power.

The arrested illegals are being detained at a state prison in the city of Dilley, roughly 100 miles north of the border. All of the illegals who have been arrested thus far are single adult men, who are the most likely to be a threat to society. The prison in question is capable of holding up to 950 illegals, but Abbott said in a visit to the border on Saturday that “the state jail commission has worked out a way to jail far more people than are currently being jailed.”

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Commentary: Florida’s DeSantis Is America’s Great Right Hope

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis

Democratic Govs. Andrew Cuomo of New York, Gavin Newsom of California, and Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan shatter everything they touch. Ron DeSantis, conversely, seems to get everything right. The Florida Republican has emerged as America’s governor. 

“We’re standing with our folks. We’re going to do the right thing. We leaned into it, and we stood strong,” DeSantis told Fox News host Tucker Carlson recently.

Rather than snip a tax, kill a regulation, and then doze off, as too many Republicans have done, DeSantis is a tireless, full-spectrum conservative. He has authorized a host of economic, cultural, and law enforcement initiatives that are buoying Florida and transforming him into the Great Right Hope.

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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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Florida Teachers’ Unions Fought Against Raises

The pandemic has made it clear to parents that teachers’ unions don’t represent the interests of students. And while, in theory, the union should serve the interests of teachers, in practice they have another master: the Democratic Party. When these interests don’t align, the result can be fascinating political contortions – as when Florida teachers’ unions fought against pay raises provided by the state’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis.
In October 2019, DeSantis declared that 2020 would be the “year of the teacher.” Despite the massive budgetary uncertainty presented by COVID, in March 2020 DeSantis requested $600 million for teacher raises and $300 million for teacher bonuses. The legislature delivered $500 million for raises and $100 million for bonuses, which Jacob Oliva, chancellor of the Division of Public Schools in the Florida Department of Education, described as “the single largest compensation increase ever in Florida and a statement to the nation that Florida is elevating the teaching profession.”
One might expect teachers’ unions to applaud DeSantis and call on other governors to follow his lead. Instead, some local teachers’ unions actually fought against the raises, effectively keeping money out of their own members’ pockets.

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Florida Trade Secret Revamp, Crackdown on Foreign Research Theft Set for Adoption

Bills revising Florida’s trade secret law and placing enhanced disclosure requirements on sources of foreign grants for university, medical and high-tech researchers are set for adoption by the House and Senate.

The bills are a response to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ call for lawmakers to adopt legislation to thwart attempts by foreign governments to infiltrate agencies and universities to steal trade secrets.

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DeSantis and Doctors Accuse Media, Big Tech of Hiding Harm from COVID Restrictions

Ron DeSantis

The media, academy and Big Tech are suppressing facts about the harms caused by COVID-19 lockdown policies, especially for younger generations, Gov. Ron DeSantis and public health experts said in a “roundtable discussion” on the novel coronavirus Monday.

These powerful American institutions are also misleading their audiences about the public health results from Florida’s open approach, which contrasted sharply with most states, they said.

The potential Republican presidential candidate hammered Google and its YouTube platform in particular for removing his earlier COVID-19 roundtable with the same doctors, branding it “misinformation.” Even some Florida news stations had their coverage removed.

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Commentary: Just Say No to Vaccine Passports

We all desperately want normal lives again. And I’m not talking about the finnicky “new normal” that accommodates Aunt Karen’s irrational fear of leaving her house. I’m talking about “normal normal,” where people crowd into concert halls with standing room only, restaurants operate crowded tables at 120 percent capacity, and cruise ship buffets shove food and alcohol down my throat like it’s Fat Tuesday, all day, every day. Ah … don’t you miss 2019? I sure do.

It was only a matter of time before some in our society turned the national COVID experiment into an excuse to say, “Papers, please.” That’s right — the so-called vaccine passport is now emerging in the United States. It’s an app that is advertised as a way to help people do the things they miss doing from pre-pandemic times. Want to feel completely safe in your favorite store, and surround yourself with others who, like you, have rolled up their sleeve and gotten the vaccine? There’s an app for that. Just scan your QR code and enter feeling sanctimoniously sanitized.

Last week, New York became the first state to offer such a vaccine verification app. The state-sanctioned app, called Excelsior Pass, claims to let participants “Attend sporting events, arts performances and more! Excelsior Pass supports a safe reopening of New York by providing a free, fast and secure way to present digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results.” Well that sounds fun to me! Sign me up!

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DeSantis Slams Critical Race Theory, Says Florida Schools Will Exclude ‘Unsubstantiated Theories’ from Curriculum

During a press conference in Palm Harbor, Florida on Wednesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that his administration is banning “Critical Race Theory” from being taught in Florida schools.

The governor made the announcement while describing a new civics education initiative aimed at teaching students “foundational concepts” in America, rather than “unsubstantiated theories.”

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After Defying COVID Groupthink, Big Tech Censors, DeSantis Hosts CPAC as Rising GOP Star for 2024

When Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis takes the stage to deliver a welcoming address at the Conservative Political Action Conference on his home field in Orlando Friday, it will be as a fast-rising force in the conservative movement and an increasingly plausible and popular contender for his party’s presidential nomination in 2024.

DeSantis will be followed in the spotlight on the first full day of CPAC 2021 by a succession of marquee GOP names vying to woo the party’s conservative base at the movement’s signature annual gathering of the tribes. Among them will be potential 2024 GOP presidential hopefuls and aspiring heirs to the leadership of their party’s populist conservative wing, including Sens. Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton, and Josh Hawley, of Texas, Arkansas and Missouri, respectively.

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Florida Official Will Direct Offices to Ignore Governor’s Plan to Lower Flags to Honor Rush Limbaugh

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Nikki Fried issued a press release on Monday stating that she will direct offices within her purview not to lower flags to half-staff in honor of the recently deceased conservative talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh.

The announcement from the Democrat comes after Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis had previously indicated that flags would be lowered to half-staff to honor the late conservative icon.

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