Ron DeSantis on Government Reform



All laws should apply to Congress too

[On Congressional reforms]: Number 1, we need term limits for members of Congress. Number 2, we need a balanced budget amendment to the US Constitution. Number 3, we need to give the president a line item veto. And, number 4, when you see all these Congressmen making a killing in the stock market, we need a 28th Amendment to the Constitution that says very simply "Congress shall make no law respecting the citizens of the United States that does not also apply to members of Congress themselves."
Source: CNN 2024 pre-Iowa caucus one-on-one debate , Jan 10, 2024

Bring a reckoning & wreak havoc on this bureaucracy

Q: What about Donald Trump saying he'd only be a dictator "on day one"?

Ron DeSantis: I would just remind people that is not how he governed. He didn't even fire Dr. Fauci. He didn't clean up the swamp. He said he was going to drain it. He did not drain it. He said he was going to build the wall and have Mexico pay for it. We don't have the wall. He did say in 2016 he'd have the largest deportation program in history. He deported less than Barack Obama did when Barack Obama was president. Some of these policies he ran on in '16, I was cheering him on then, but he didn't deliver it. Here's what I can promise people. 100% of the things I promised as governor, I delivered on those promises. That's what I'll do for you as president. I will go in and wreak havoc on this bureaucracy. You will see people fired and we are going to bring a reckoning for how this government handled COVID-19 and the lockdown.

Source: NewsNation 2023 Republican primary debate in Alabama , Dec 6, 2023

No Zuckerbucks & no ballot harvesting

Ron DeSantis: [In Florida,] we require voter ID universal, no Zuckerbucks, no mass mail balloting and no ballot harvesting. The result of that in both 2020 and 2022, we counted millions of votes on election night and everybody was happy. That is not happening throughout this country. But as the nominee, I am not going to fight with one hand tied behind my back. I'm going to have organizations in all the swing states. If they're harvesting, we are harvesting. If they're Zuckerbucks, we're Zuckerbucks.

Cato Institute "Zuckerbucks" explanation 9/12/22: Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's foundation provided grants to local election offices around the country to aid in administrative tasks & voter communication--a program nicknamed Zuckerbucks.

Cato Institute "Ballot Harvesting" explanation 5/12/22: Ballot harvesting happens when one person gathers absentee/?mail ballots from many voters--bundling, you might say--for submission at a mail or drop box.

Source: NewsNation 2023 Republican primary debate in Alabama , Dec 6, 2023

Allow statewide prosecutor to investigate election crimes

SB 4-B: Authorizing the Office of Statewide Prosecution to investigate and prosecute crimes involving voting in an election for a federal or state office, voting in an election on a referendum, an initiative, or an issue, the petition activities for a federal or state office, the petition activities for a referendum, an initiative, or an issue, or voter registration, etc.

ACLU-Florida testimony in opposition, 2/9: To expand OSP's jurisdiction and increase the already significant resources allocated to that office risks that returning citizens [those exiting prison after serving their sentences] will continue to be arrested, prosecuted, and ensnared in the criminal legal system for honest mistakes about their eligibility. It also risks intimidating returning citizens who are eligible to vote.

Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 27-12-1 on Feb/8/23; passed House 77-33-9 on Feb/10/23; signed by Governor Ron DeSantis on Feb/15/23.

Source: Florida State Legislature voting records SB 4-B , Feb 15, 2023

State legislatures decide presidential electors

Appearing on Fox News two days after the 2020 election, DeSantis hinted at the notion that Republican legislators in key swing states could potentially override the presidential choices of state voters. DeSantis was one of the first prominent Republicans to publicly float this idea. DeSantis said, "Especially if you're in those states that have Republican legislatures: call your state representatives and your state senators. Call Under Article II of the Constitution, presidential electors are done by the legislatures, and the framework they create. And if there's departure from that, if they're not following law, if they're ignoring the law, then they can provide remedies as well. So I would exhaust every option to make sure we have a fair count."

DeSantis continued into early December 2020 to say he was encouraging Trump to "fight on." In mid-December 2020, after the Electoral College ratified Biden's victory, he said: "The College voted. What's going to happen is going to happen."

Source: CNN on 2020 Election Denial in 2022 Florida Governor race , Sep 9, 2022

Clean the voter rolls, mails ballots only on request

It is Orwellian doublespeak to invoke the concept of "Voting rights" to mean ballot harvesting, prohibiting voter ID and taxpayer funding of elections. Ballot harvesting has no place in Florida and we need to increase the penalties for those who do it. We also need to ensure that supervisors clean the voter rolls, that only citizens are registered to vote and that mail ballots only go to those who actually request them before each individual election.
Source: 2022 State of the State Address to the Idaho legislature , Jan 11, 2022

Enact restrictions on vote-by-mail

SB90: Limiting the duration of requests for vote-by-mail ballots to all elections; prohibiting certain solicitation activities within a specified area surrounding a drop box, etc.

Summary by Brennan Center (4/30/21): The 48-page law makes a slew of changes to Florida elections, including making voter registration more difficult, modifying rules for observers in ways that could disrupt election administration, and restricting the ability to provide snacks and water to voters waiting in line.

Legislative outcome: Passed Senate 23-17-0 on Apr/26/21; Passed House 77-40-3 on Apr/29/21; Signed by Governor Ron DeSantis May/6/21

Source: Brennan Center on Florida Legislature voting records SB90 , May 6, 2021

No to ballot harvesting and private groups spending money

We cannot allow Big Tech to interfere in our elections by putting a thumb on the scale for political candidates favored by Silicon Valley. We need to make sure our elections are transparent and run efficiently. There should be no ballot harvesting in the state of Florida. One person, one vote. We also cannot allow private groups to pour millions of dollars into the administration of our elections. That is a public function and should be done free from this type of private interference.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Florida legislature , Mar 2, 2021

Ban ballot harvesting, outside groups interfering

Florida has also led and continues to lead on ensuring the integrity of our elections. This year Florida's leading on banning all forms of ballot harvesting and banning third-party political groups like those funded by billionaire Mark Zuckerberg from interfering in the administration of our elections. The bottom line is this, in Florida your vote counts and we will continue to have a process that is transparent and inspires confidence.
Source: Remarks by Senator DeSantis at the 2021 CPAC Conference , Feb 26, 2021

Signed term limit pledge: 6 years House; 12 years Senate.

DeSantis signed pledging 6-year term limit

Organizational Self-Description: U.S. Term Limits, the nation`s oldest and largest term limits advocacy group, announced that 14 new signers of its congressional term limits amendment pledge have been elected to the 114th Congress. The group includes five new senators, eight new House members and one House incumbent who signed the pledge for the first time this cycle. The pledge calls for members to co-sponsor and vote for a constitutional amendment limiting House members to three terms (six years) and Senators to two terms (12 years). The USTL President said, `The American people are fed up with career politicians in Washington and strongly embracing term limits as a remedy. Gallup polling shows that 75% of Americans support term limits.`

Opposing legal argument: [ACLU, Nov. 7, 2014]: In U.S. Term Limits v. Thornton (May 22, 1995), the Court ended the movement to enact term limits for Congress on a state-by-state basis. The Court held that the qualifications for Congress established in the Constitution itself could not be amended by the states without a constitutional amendment, and that the notion of congressional term limits violates the `fundamental principle of our representative democracy `that the people should chose whom they please to govern them.``

Opposing political argument: [Cato Institute Briefing Paper No. 14, Feb. 18, 1992]: Several considerations may explain political scientists` open hostility to term limitation:

Source: Press release from U.S. Term Limits 16-USTL on Nov 8, 2014

Constitutional amendment for Congressional term limits.

DeSantis signed supporting Congressional term limits

Excerpts from press release on Term Limits Caucus: Two U.S. Term Limits pledge signers, Republican Rep. Rod Blum (IA-1) and Democrat Rep. Beto O`Rourke (TX-16), have announced the formation of a Term Limits Caucus, which will work to build bipartisan support behind a constitutional amendment imposing term limits on Congress. `The root of this problem is that politicians are incentivized by the system to care more about retaining their position than doing what is best for the country,` Blum said. `Our founding fathers never intended for public service to be a career, rather, serving in Congress was designed to be a temporary sacrifice made for the public good.`

The new working group will marshal pro-term limits members together to pursue common ground. One of its most important duties will be building consensus around the U.S. Term Limits Amendment of three House terms and two Senate terms, to which both Blum and O`Rourke have pledged their exclusive support.

Supporting argument: (Cato Institute): We should limit members to three terms in the House and two terms in the Senate. Let more people serve. Let more people make the laws. And let`s get some people who don`t want to make Congress a lifelong career. Some say that term limits would deprive us of the skills of experienced lawmakers. Really? It`s the experienced legislators who gave us a $17 trillion national debt, and the endless war in Iraq, and the Wall Street bailout.

Supporting argument: (Heritage Foundation): The only serious opponents of term limits are incumbent politicians and the special interests--particularly labor unions--that support them. Special interests oppose term limits because they do not want to lose their valuable investments in incumbent legislators. Many are organized to extract programs, subsidies, and regulations from the federal government--to use the law as a lever to benefit their own constituencies or harm their rivals.

Source: U.S. Term Limits 17MEM-USTL on Jan 26, 2017

Other candidates on Government Reform: Ron DeSantis on other issues:
2024 Republican Presidential Candidates:
Ryan Binkley (R-TX)
Gov. Doug Burgum (R-ND)
Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ)
Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL)
Larry Elder (R-CA;withdrew)
Gov. Nikki Haley (R-SC)
Rep. Will Hurd (R-FL;withdrew)
Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR)
Perry Johnson (R-IL)
Mayor Steve Laffey (R-RI)
Former V.P.Mike Pence (R-IN;withdrew)
Vivek Ramaswamy (R-OH)
Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC)
Secy. Corey Stapleton (R-MT)
Mayor Francis Suarez (R-FL;withdrew)
Former Pres.Donald Trump (R-NY)

2024 Democratic and 3rd-party primary candidates:
Pres. Joe Biden (D-DE)
V.P.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. (I-NY)
Chase Oliver (L-GA)
Rep.Dean Phillips (D-MN)
Jill Stein (Green)
Cornel West (Green Party)
Kanye West (Birthday Party)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
Civil Rights
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Social Security
Tax Reform

External Links about Ron DeSantis:

Page last updated: Feb 16, 2024; copyright 1999-2022 Jesse Gordon and OnTheIssues.org