DeSantis speaks just steps away from California’s Disneyland – and questions why no one was protesting his appearance
Ron DeSantis lamented that he did not encounter the same opposition from California residents during his visit Friday as he did when he was in the Golden State earlier this year.
The Florida governor spoke to a room of hundreds of California Republicans just steps away from his rival’s home turf, Disneyland.
But after seeing a dip in the polls since his last visit to Southern California in March, the 2024 candidate was surprised to see no large numbers of protesters demonstrating against his comments.
‘When you stand up for what is right and exercise leadership, it is not without cost. People will come after you. The left is coming after you, the media is coming after you,” DeSantis said.
Then he seemed to come to a realization: “I’m actually a little disappointed, I didn’t see any protesters coming out for me today. Where have the protesters gone? We had them six months ago when I was here. I’ve had them in other parts of California since I’ve been here.”
Ron DeSantis joked that he was “disappointed” he didn’t encounter any protesters during his stop in Southern California on Friday — as he was during his visit to the Golden State in March.
Meanwhile, hundreds of pro- and anti-Trump protesters were outside the Anaheim Marriott Convention Center on Friday during the California GOP’s Fall Convention.
DeSantis spoke across the street from Disneyland. He joked, “Great to be in Southern California. I didn’t know if I was even allowed – I’m kind of close to DisneyLand. I didn’t know if they would let me join them. It’s OK’
Meanwhile, dozens — and at some points possibly hundreds — of pro- and anti-Trump demonstrators gathered around the convention center and Marriott Anaheim hotel throughout the morning and into the afternoon on Friday.
DeSantis, who is in a long-running war with Walt Disney Co., spoke across the street from Disneyland.
“Great to be in Southern California,” he said as he walked onto the stage. “I didn’t know if I was even allowed – I’m kind of close to DisneyLand. I didn’t know if they would let me join them. It’s OK.’
Former President Donald Trump delivered remarks earlier on Friday to a room of about 1,500 Republicans during the convention’s lunch banquet. He then stopped at an ice cream parlor in Beverly Hills for a fundraiser.
DeSantis had a rally in Long Beach during the day before speaking at the dinner banquet for the California GOP’s fall convention.
Trump, however, was the clear star of the day.
“I understand one of my residents was here before and said he was ‘turning Florida red,’” Desantis noted of Trump, who has his permanent residence in Palm Beach, Florida.
“If he was the one who turned Florida red, I just wish he wouldn’t have turned Georgia and Arizona blue because that hasn’t been good for us at all,” the 2024 hopeful said, referring to the loss of several important swing states by Trump. in 2020.
Protesters supporting and opposing Trump’s appearance there Friday clashed outside the Anaheim Marriott Convention Center
Pro-Trump protesters hold signs as they gather outside the California Republican Party’s fall convention in Anaheim during the former president’s remarks
Notably, DeSantis made his comments literally across the street from Disneyland, owned by the Florida governor’s rival, Walt Disney Co.
DeSantis returned to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library on Wednesday for the second Republican primary debate. Trump skipped the event after also missing the first debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, last month.
In March, DeSantis was at the Reagan Library for a stop on his book tour before announcing his presidential bid.
Returning to Simi Valley, California, the governor made it clear he hoped to field some questions during the debate about Reagan’s legacy.
“As I was preparing for this debate, I started watching some of President Reagan’s speeches and writings — just to get myself in the mood,” DeSantis told the crowd Friday.
“I actually thought they might ask a question about Reagan’s legacy, but they didn’t,” he said of the trio of moderators from Fox News, Fox Business and Univision.
“They asked – I don’t know what they asked,” he laughed. “But that’s okay. I just roll with the punches – I’m there, I’ll deal with whatever they throw at me.”
DeSantis consistently ranks second behind Trump — but a distant second.
His poll numbers have fallen in recent weeks. And some surveys even show the governor coming in fifth.