AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta
- Republican presidential candidate Asa Hutchinson spoke out about the feud between Disney and Ron DeSantis.
- He told CNN on Sunday: “It’s not the role of government to punish a business.”
- Disney filed a lawsuit against the Florida governor last week.
Asa Hutchinson, a Republican candidate for president, responded to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ spat with Disney on Sunday, saying it’s “not the role of government” to punish a business with which one disagrees.
During an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union,” host Dana Bash asked Hutchinson about his stance on fellow Republicans “using the government to change social policy and wage culture wars?”
“I don’t like what Disney said about the legislation that I would have supported in Florida, but it’s not the role of government to punish a business when you disagree with what they’re saying or a position that they take,” Hutchinson said.
Disney publicly criticized DeSantis’ so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which he signed into law last March. It prevents teachers in kindergarten to third grade from holding classroom discussions about sexual orientation and gender identity.
In retaliation, DeSantis threatened changes to Disney’s special tax district. Disney filed a lawsuit last week against DeSantis — who is expected to announce his own White House bid — claiming that the governor’s ongoing actions against Disney violate its Constitutional rights.
—Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) April 30, 2023
“If that was the view of a Republican, then we’re going to be in all kinds of trouble in our businesses in blue states if they start punishing businesses for taking a more conservative speech or position,” Hutchinson said on Sunday. “And so I don’t understand a conservative punishing a business that’s the largest employer in the state.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to a crowd at Adventure Outdoors gun store in Smyrna, Georgia.
John Bazemore/ AP Photo
Hutchinson added: “In Arkansas and, as governors, we recruit industry. We support our industry because it provides jobs and we’re not dictating to them what their speech is. To me, that’s a conservative position.”