Ron DeSantis' state 'army' isn't about protecting Florida — here's his 'disgusting' real plan: analysis
Governor Ron DeSantis on Facebook.

On Friday, writing for the Daily Beast, columnist Michael Daly outlined the real, "disgusting" purpose behind the effort by Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis to revive an old state "army" independent of the National Guard, which will answer only to him and cannot be mobilized by the federal government.

"Back at the start of World War II, the federal government authorized the states to form military units to fill in for the national guard, which had been incorporated into the U.S military to fight in Europe and the Pacific," wrote Daly. "The Florida Guard was formed in 1941. Its motto, 'Let Us Alone,' invoked fealty to Florida, not to America, even though this was a time that called for national unity against a common enemy. Those same three words had appeared on a flag that Florida’ first governor, William Moseley, flew at his inauguration in 1841. But, perhaps because Florida’s leading business people were actively engaged in trade with folks from beyond its borders, the state senate took exception to the words and never officially approved the flag."

Ultimately, wrote Daly, DeSantis has no public safety motivation to revive this army — particularly given his catastrophic response to the COVID-19 pandemic — and wants it instead for political power. The hint, he said, was the use of the "Let Us Alone" slogan on the podium at a speech on Thursday.

"DeSantis clearly did not decide to revive the state guard in response to a new variant that complicates a continuing national emergency that has left 786,000 Americans dead and hundreds of thousands more disabled," wrote Daly. "All that raises the question of what DeSantis intends to do with something so small as Ron’s Army ... The real mission of Ron’s Army is to appeal to that state-before-nation sentiment, along with the individual-before-feds feelings that fill the MAGA base. Ron’s Army sure looks like part of a long-term DeSantis plan to become the commander-in-chief of the whole country."

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