His trip comes in the wake of ongoing turmoil in Israel over Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s plans for a judicial overhaul.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who once vowed to be the most “pro-Israel governor in America,” will make his second visit to the nation right before he’s expected to jump into the 2024 presidential race.
The Jerusalem Post and Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem announced Tuesday that DeSantis will head to Israel, where he is expected to deliver the keynote address on April 27 for an event titled “Celebrate the Faces of Israel.” His trip abroad will come after swings through several states next month, including Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and Utah.
DeSantis has been a vocal defender of Israel during his time in office and supported the decision by the Trump administration to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. He led a trade delegation to Israel in 2019, where he also held a ceremonial Florida Cabinet meeting with other statewide elected officials. While governor, he has also pushed to go after corporations that boycotted or limited their activities in Israel and supported state funding to make security improvement to Jewish schools.
From the Sarasota Herald Tribune:
DeSantis has pitched himself as “the most pro-Israel governor in America.” He met with Netanyahu in 2019 during his first trip abroad as governor, calling him “a really strong leader.” His far right coalition recently tried to push through a judicial overhaul that was widely criticized as an assault on democracy. The judicial overhaul would “weaken the Supreme Court and grant politicians less judicial oversight in their policymaking,” according to the Associated Press.”Critics say the move upends Israel’s system of checks and balances and pushes it toward autocracy,” the AP reported.
DeSantis has been delving more into foreign policy as he prepares for a likely presidential bid, meeting with four foreign ambassadors this month. uThe governor’s recent comment that the war in Ukraine is a “territorial dispute” drew significant pushback from Republicans, contributing to a sense that his presidential stock has been dropping in recent weeks.