DeSantis hits back at NAACP after Florida travel warning

Tallahassee, Florida - Florida Governor Ron DeSantis hit back at the NAACP's recent travel warning in direct response to his policies.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis hit back at the NAACP's recent travel warning in direct response to his policies.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis hit back at the NAACP's recent travel warning in direct response to his policies.  © Elijah Nouvelage / AFP

"As Governor DeSantis announced last week, Florida is seeing record-breaking tourism," his spokesperson told Fox News on Monday. "This is nothing more than a stunt."

Over the weekend, the NAACP warned that DeSantis and Florida's Republican-dominated legislature had made the state "openly hostile toward African-Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals."

Earlier in 2023, DeSantis forced changes to Advanced Placement (AP) African-American history classes in high schools after he objected to some of the coursework. He has also fought against diversity, equity, and inclusion programs throughout the state.

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Tourism is Florida’s top industry, so the state economy could be impacted if people heed the NAACP’s warning.

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According to state data, 126 million people visited Florida in 2018. DeSantis took office in 2019, and another 131 million people visited that year. In 2022, the first complete post-pandemic year, Florida welcomed 137 million people.

DeSantis has already picked a major fight with one of Florida’s biggest tourism draws: Disney. The Mouse House recently cancelled a planned $1 billion project in the state amid a legal fight with the governor.

The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), a Latino civil rights organization, and Equality Florida, a gay rights advocacy group, issued similar warnings ahead of the NAACP’s advisory.

Cover photo: Elijah Nouvelage / AFP

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