Governor Ron DeSantis was in Fort Myers Beach on Tuesday and was endorsed by Everglades Trust in his bid to hold his seat as governor.
The governor opened with the importance of the environment and then pivoted to how his decision to keep Florida open during the pandemic helped families, especially because he ordered schools to reopen.
The main event was how the environment impacts business, and he brought local business owners to stand by his side in support.
Governor DeSantis left his suit and tie at home Tuesday afternoon as he showed up at a restaurant in full campaign mode.
The governor was pleased to accept the endorsement from the Everglades Trust.
“Under Governor DeSantis’ leadership, the South Florida Water Management District has started, hit major milestones, or completed over 50 Everglades restoration project components,” said Anna Upton, CEO of the Everglades Trust.
DeSantis said he pushed more water south through the Everglades from Lake Okeechobee, stopped discharges from Lake O into St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers, and created technology to help clean up the blue-green algae when discharges have to happen.
“I think we’ve done better than anyone thought, but we’ve got more to do,” said DeSantis.
Local business owners and fishermen stood by DeSantis’ side. They told his supporters during this campaign stop that they benefitted thanks to the governor’s decision-making.
How big of a deal is this endorsement by Everglades Trust? Political science expert Aubrey Jewett said it only helps.
“He has tried to run as a more pro-environment Republican really going all the way back to his first run for governor four years ago. And so that has been one of the consistent themes that he’s pushed in. So getting an endorsement from the Everglades Trust reinforces that message that he’s been pushing,” said Jewett.
During this campaign season, the governor has made stops in Southwest Florida a handful of times, but we’ve yet to see his opponent, Charlie Crist.
WINK News asked the Democratic nominee’s press office when we could expect him in our area. They weren’t able to give a date.
You can watch a replay of the event in the player below or by clicking here.