Florida’s House Speaker says he’s open to the idea of changing state law to pave the way for a 2024 presidential run by Gov. Ron DeSantis.
During a Nov. 22 press conference, Florida House Speaker Paul Renner (R-Palm Coast) was asked if he would be interested in changing an existing state law that requires someone holding a state job to resign before running for federal office. Under current Florida law, someone like Ron DeSantis would have to resign his position as Florida’s governor within 10 days after qualifying to run for the presidency.
“I think that’s a great idea,” Renner replied. “I think we’ll look at that.”
Renner also noted that Florida had all of the ballots counted by 8:30 p.m. on election night. “It was not a partisan issue,” he said, adding that “after the embarrassment of 2000,” Florida has implemented several measures to “make it easier to vote and harder to cheat.”
It’s a term used frequently by DeSantis supporters in defending election integrity measures he has signed into law and offices he has created that have been attacked by Democrat politicians and liberal media as voter suppression tactics.
“If an individual who is Florida governor is running for president, I think he should be allowed to do it,” state Senate President Kathleen Passidomo told reporters. “I really do. That’s a big honor and a privilege, so it is a good idea.”
Both Renner and Passidomo were sworn into their new positions on Nov. 22, the day before they expressed favor for changing Florida state law to accommodate a DeSantis presidential run.
As previously reported by The Epoch Times, candidate Drake Wuertz said Renner “got heavily involved in primaries this year when previous House Speakers did not,” adding that Renner “definitely wanted his preferred candidates to win and was not shy about it.”
Wuertz lost his bid to unseat Renner’s endorsed candidate, David Smith, in Florida’s Aug. 23 primary.
The Epoch Times also reported that Florida’s voters already suspect that establishment Republicans were trying to use DeSantis as a means of getting rid of Donald Trump.
Tim Sharp, who filed a lawsuit (pdf) for being unjustly disqualified from running for a Florida House seat in the 2022 primary, said it’s “alarming and very telling that Renner is the legislator proposing this change in the law to allow DeSantis to run.”
Sharp also noted that Renner only proposed one bill during the 2021 and 2022 legislative sessions—HCR1263—a measure to allow a joint session of the Florida House and Senate so DeSantis could deliver his State of the State address.
“The only logical conclusion I can come to on why he would bring something so controversial to debate is that he’s being instructed to wound the America First movement and Donald J. Trump by his establishment handlers,” Sharp posited. “The Republican establishment wants Trump out of the picture and will use any form of power available to them to make that happen.”
The Epoch Times reached out to Renner’s office but did not hear back by publication time.