As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis used his veto power to curb significant state budget changes. On Thursday, June 15, Gov. DeSantis prevented millions of dollars from going to programs that would help to prevent rampant gun violence and others that would help enrich students in Black history and other valuable decisions.
DeSantis rejected projects totaling nearly a whopping $30 million. Within that, he withheld funds from the University of South Florida’s nursing campus in the Sarasota area, which endorsed his primary presidential opponent, Donald Trump.
The senator of the Sarasota region wrote in a text message, “The governor is clearly upset I endorsed Donald Trump for President, and so he took it out on the people of Sarasota County.” He continued to express his disappointment for DeSantis not understanding “that people come first.”
“The governor clearly sees politics differently. It’s mean-spirited acts like this that are defining him here and across the country.”
DeSantis axed several prominent diversity awareness programs and utilized billions to continue pushing his own agenda, most notably a $5 million group fund looking to end community gun violence. Sen. Darryl Rouson, the head of the fund, warned that vetoing the bill could cause a severe rise in gun violence next month. The vetoed Black history bills align with DeSantis’ sentiment on restricting critical race theory.
Following the vetoes, DeSantis held a press conference at a Fort Pierce yacht club. He justified the large budget that he was at liberty to allocate. He said, “We’re good fiscal stewards. We want to be a good place to be a citizen…not only by taxing lightly but also by spending reasonably.”