Gov. Ron DeSantis plans to make money transfer services like PayPal, as well as credit cards and banks, the next targets of his campaign against “woke ideology,” announcing a set of measures Wednesday ahead of the next legislative session .
The proposals, which DeSantis said would include a mix of legislative and executive initiatives, would prohibit credit card companies and money transfer services from “discriminating” against users based on political or religious ideology.
Banks, credit cards and money transfer services “shouldn’t be colluding with each other to marginalize people with whom they have political disagreements,” DeSantis said, addressing an audience in the paneled dining room wooden Harpoon Harry’s Crab House in downtown Tampa. “This is not the way to run an economy effectively.”
DeSantis singled out PayPal as a company that would be affected by his proposed measures.
PayPal has done this before cut accounts and fundraising platforms affiliated with far-right groups such as the Proud Boys, but also anti-fascism or “antifa” groups, to undermine their policy of promoting violence or intolerance.
The governor specifically referenced crowdfunding website GoFundMe’s decision to block donations to a convoy of Canadian truckers that shut down Ottawa in January and February to protest vaccine mandates. Earlier this year, DeSantis said he would work with the state attorney general to investigate the company.
Related: DeSantis, other Republicans seize on GoFundMe controversy over Canadian truckers’ protest
The details of the proposals are not yet clear. But they would also prevent the State Board of Trustees, which manages Florida’s retirement funds, from considering companies’ environmental or social impact before investing, an approach known as ESG, short for environmental investing. social and government.
DeSantis said his proposal would require state pension fund managers to make investment decisions based solely on investment return.
Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, the incoming speaker of the Florida House, said at the event that he looked forward to working with the governor to move the proposals forward.
Related: Incoming Florida leaders Passidomo, Renner point to housing, ‘awakened’ issues as priorities
Renner has previously said he wants to focus on curbing environmental, social and governance investment in the state’s financial industry.
Speaking alongside DeSantis at the Tampa restaurant, he described him as the “woke elite who are weaponizing American capitalism against us.”
“This is a pocketbook issue and we will not relent until we begin to dismantle this dangerous form of ESG,” Renner said.