Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (Republican) has announced Thursday’s executive and legislative plans to combat the Chinese influence and other foreign countries in Florida.
The new actions from DeSantis are aimed at addressing threats posed by China, Cuba, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Venezuela in cyberspace, real estate, and academia.
This action is intended to stop nations being able influence or espionage within their state, and to prevent purchases of agricultural land or lands around military bases or by the governments’ agents.
“From server farms to farmland, the Communist Party of China has been worming its way into our nation’s data storage systems and buying up tracts of land near sensitive national security sites,”DeSantis stated this in a statement. “By prohibiting the purchase of lands, state contracts with Chinese technology firms, and the infiltration of CCP-affiliated groups such as Confucius Institutes, Florida is leading the way to protect our nation from international foes.”
DeSantis issued an executive order prohibiting government agencies from purchasing technology products or services from foreign companies. It is effective immediately. The governor also proposed legislative action that would ban government organizations from contracting with companies owned by, controlled by, or domiciled in hostile foreign countries if the contract would provide access to personal information of the state’s residents.
DeSantis made new legislative proposals that would prohibit these countries from buying land next to U.S. military bases. It comes after China bought land adjacent to U.S. military bases and has infiltrated U.S. infrastructure.
DeSantis proposed a new state legislation that would amend Florida law to ban gifts or donations to higher education institutions from anyone residing or domiciled in hostile countries or any government entity from these hostile nations.
Today I took steps to defend Floridians against the evil intentions of foreign adversaries, like the Chinese Communist Party.
This Legislative Session, I am proposing additional protections for our homeland against threats arrayed by those who seek our nation’s downfall. pic.twitter.com/2yVxf33fL6
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) September 22, 2022
“The Chinese Communist Party cheats on trade, steals our intellectual property, and produces deadly drugs like fentanyl that are pouring into our southern border,” said Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez. “Governor DeSantis’ announcements today are not only critical to protecting American interests and Florida farmlands but also to maintaining our national security. Florida will never kowtow to the oppressive regime of China.”
“With today’s Executive Order, Governor DeSantis takes decisive action to defend the State of Florida and all Floridians from the cyber threats posed by foreign countries of concern and associated groups,”Pedro Allende, Secretary of the Department of Management Services. “The Governor’s direction to develop cybersecurity and procurement rules and standards will make it harder for bad actors to gain a foothold on state infrastructure, will protect Floridians’ personal information and intellectual property, and will further secure key information systems and the critical infrastructure that our state and its citizens rely on each day.”
“Thanks to Governor DeSantis, Florida will not allow foreign adversaries and Communist dictatorships to have insights into some of the most sensitive data and cutting-edge research taking place in U.S. academia,”Manny Diaz Jr., Commissioner of Education “As a Cuban-American, I know how Communist countries attempt to infiltrate schools and universities to steal intellectual property and indoctrinate young people with their dangerous and radical ideology. By removing this influence and focusing on the importance of American ideals and citizenship through civics education, Florida is again leading the way for the nation to follow.”
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