Criticized by the group after the vote of his law on teaching homosexuality and the question of gender, the Republican definitively revoked, on Monday, the special status allowing the company to govern the immense domain alone de DisneyWorld.
by Arnaud Leparmentier (New York, correspondent)
“There is again a sheriff in the city”: the Republican governor of Florida, Ron Desantis, had a jubilant tone, Monday, February 27, when he signed the law ending the privileges of Disney. Since 1967, the group has benefited from a special status allowing it to govern the immense Disneyworld domain alone, near Orlando. “Today, the corporate kingdom is finally coming to an end,” said the probable candidate for republican primary for the 2024 presidential election.
m. DESANTIS has been carrying out a cultural war against the company for months, accused of “WOKE” and progressive drift. In multiple tweets, the governor is delighted to force the company to respect the rules of construction and security of the Florida State, to pay his taxes and to no longer have privileged treatment. Above all, he ended the quasi-extraterritoriality from which the Park benefited from the public in 1971: he thus appointed a council of five people to supervise the site, while these personalities were until now chosen by Disney. Its president will be Martin Garcia, boss of an investment company in Tampa and republican donor. Mr. Desantis also appointed Bridget Ziegler, co-founder of the conservative group Moms for Liberty (Les Mamans for Liberty).
This decision marks the end of an era for the leisure and entertainment group, which had acquired 11,000 hectares of marshes in the early 1960s right next to Orlando airport. The objective of the Walt Disney founder was to build an amusement park similar to the Disneyland of Anaheim, near Los Angeles, but to add golf courses, hotels and pre -profuse leisure places. In short, a huge city in the heart of Florida.
“The challenge is democracy”, worried at the time with Walt Disney, Paul Helliwell, a lawyer for Miami, former CIA who became a consultant for Disney, Tell Wall Street Journal . A successful challenge: the company then negotiated with the state of Florida a quasi-independence status on its land. The case was concluded in the wake of the premature death of Walt Disney, in 1966.
Disney “ready to work in this new framework”
This status is now over, and Disney has no choice but to accept the new law: “We are turned to the future and ready to work in this new framework,” said the company during the vote of the law in early February. This rocking marks a new step in the cultural war led by Mr. Desantis against the Democratic left.
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