The Walt Disney Company sued Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) on Wednesday, claiming that his administration’s actions against the company amounted to a “targeted campaign” of governmental retaliation.
Why it’s important The most recent twist in the story suggests that the long-running dispute between DeSantis and Disney, which began when the latter company denounced what has come to be known as the “Don’t Say Gay” law, is far from over.
The governor-appointed board, whose members are named as defendants, voted on Wednesday to revoke prior agreements that had granted the company control over the majority of construction close to its Orlando resort, which is why Disney filed the lawsuit.
Catch up quick: DeSantis in mid-April introduced a bill aimed at nullifying the agreement the company had struck with the previous board overseeing the governance of Disney World in Orlando.
He also encouraged lawmakers to revoke other privileges Disney holds in Florida, including its monorail system’s exemption from state inspections.
Meanwhile, fellow Republicans and critics of DeSantis, a potential 2024 presidential contender, have blasted his handling of the situation.
How Disney clawed back some power
After DeSantis installed political allies onto the board earlier this year, members discovered previously made covenant agreements that restricted the state’s ability to rein in development at Disney World.
The agreement prevents the DeSantis board from using Disney’s name, symbols associated with it and the theme park, and the likeness of Disney characters without the company’s permission, per AP. It also gives the company the ability to sue for damages for violations.
The agreement is in effect until perpetuity — or until 21 years after the death of the last survivor of the descendants of England’s King Charles III.