Tuesday 27 June 2023

Florida’s Largest Police Union Endorsed Trump in 2020. Now They Want DeSantis.

 Florida’s largest police union, which endorsed former President Donald Trump in the 2020 election, announced it is supporting Florida GOP governor Ron DeSantis for president.

“Now more than ever, Americans must elect the one candidate for president who has a proven track record in enhancing public safety and investing in the essential men and women who help maintain public safety every day,” Florida Police Benevolent Association President John Kazanjian said in a statement lauding the Florida governor, adding, “The ideological experiment of defunding the police and scapegoating law enforcement for America’s social problems has failed.”

 “For the over 30,000 men and women in the Florida Police Benevolent Association, the choice for us could not be clearer,” Kazanjian asserted. “Governor Ron DeSantis and his administration have made Florida a law-and-order state, by investing in and supporting the thousands of law enforcement officers, who serve on the front lines in keeping our communities safe and secure. From investing over $100 million dollars to increase the salaries of state law enforcement officers to recruiting the best men and women across the country to join our ranks, to investing $20 million to local law enforcement agencies to support their battle against the Fentanyl epidemic, to toughening the penalties for major crimes, Governor DeSantis has made Florida a destination for all Americans to live safely and freely.”

“He is one of the most effective Governors in the nation and he will take his proven track record to the White House, where he will continue to have the backs of law enforcement officers and make public safety a top priority, For these reasons, the Florida PBA is proud to endorse our Governor, Ron DeSantis, for President of the United States and we will do all that we can to help him prevail,” Kazanjian concluded.

As far back as September 2020, in the wake of the Black Lives Matter riots, DeSantis announced legislation that would impose felonies to punish protesters who turn violent and would implement harsh penalties for cities that chose to defund or disband their police departments.

“DeSantis told reporters during a news briefing at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office the bill would charge protesters with felonies for damaging property and inflicting injuries, as well as sentence them to mandatory jail time for hitting a law enforcement officer,” Politico reported. “The bill, which state lawmakers will consider during next year’s legislative session, would also bar protesters who commit crimes from receiving state benefits or working for the state.”

“We’re not going to go down the road that other places have gone,” DeSantis said in his press conference. “If you do it, and you know that a ton of bricks will rain down on you, then I think people will think twice about engaging in this type of conduct.”

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