Gov. Ron DeSantis wants lawmakers to pass legislation that “protects medical professionals’ freedom of speech,” a direct reply to legislation recently signed into law in California by Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. | Crystal Vander Weit/TCPalm.com via AP Photo
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — At an event that featured a dermatologist who spreads Covid-19 vaccine conspiracy theories, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday said he will push Florida’s Republican-controlled Legislature to make permanent many of his pandemic-era policies that have made him a star with many in the GOP and a potential 2024 presidential candidate.
The proposal, announced during a press conference in Panama City, would put into state law many of the policies DeSantis implemented through executive order or were temporarily passed during a 2021 special legislative session. It was at a time when he was actively making himself a counterweight to elected officials in other states who instituted pandemic mitigation measures such as mask and vaccine mandates.
“We believe that there is no turning back from our direction,” DeSantis said. “And we need to lead with this. We need to lead with this by making all these protections permanent in state statute, which we are going to do in the upcoming legislative session.”
DeSantis’ proposal would …