Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) will be able to run for president in 2024 without relinquishing his job as governor thanks to a bill passed by the Florida legislature on Friday that reforms the state’s election law.
The bill passed the Florida House by a vote of 76-34 a few days after passing the Florida Senate by a vote of 28-12, Politico reported.
The new legislation approved by both chambers exempts “any person seeking the office of President or Vice President of the United States” from “Resign to Run.”
Florida’s “Resign to Run” is a law that requires the current holder of an office to resign from that office before they can run for another office.
The bill is on its way to DeSantis’ office to be signed.
Democrats criticized the new bill.
“This is not just a clarification, this is an intentional move to curry favor,” Democratic state Sen. Shevrin Jones said Thursday. “You’re not doing this because it’s the right thing to do. You’re doing it because you can.”
“We in this body are doing the governor´s bidding,” Democratic state Rep. Angela Nixon said. “He needs to resign to run if he wants to run for president, period. Last time I checked, being governor is a full-time job. Running for president takes a lot of work.”
New York Post reported:
Backers of the change argue that it is not specifically aimed at DeSantis, who has not yet announced his 2024 presidential intentions but is widely expected to launch his White House campaign sometime after Florida’s legislative session ends on May 5.
“I can’t think of a better training ground than the state of Florida for a future commander in chief,” Republican state Rep. Tyler Sirois said Friday.
Republican Senate President Kathleen Passadomo said last year that having a Florida governor run for the nation’s highest office would be a “big honor” and that the state’s chief executive should be exempted from Florida’s “Resign to Run” law.
“If an individual who is Florida governor is running for president, I think he should be allowed to do it,” Passadomo said last November. “I really do. That’s a big honor and a privilege, so it is a good idea.”
Democrats opposed to the change accuse Republicans of carrying water for DeSantis and argue that the 44-year-old politician should not be allowed to govern the third-largest state in the country while also campaigning for president.
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