Texas Republicans are done with Disney, with a new poll showing that 78 percent of Republican voters want to prohibit taxpayer dollars from going to the company following their public opposition to anti-grooming legislation in Florida.
The poll, performed by CWS Research and commissioned by the Defend Texas Liberty PAC, comes on the heels of a schism between the leaders of the Texas House and Senate on the issue.
After Disney spoke out against Florida’s Parental Rights in Education bill, which prohibits instruction on sexual ideology and gender identity in kindergarten through third-grade classrooms, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said he was “done” with the company, telling supporters to stop funding the entertainment giant.
“Cut off the Disney Channel. Cancel your park trip or your cruise if one is planned. If you own Disney stock, sell it. … And spread these videos to your friends. People must see what has been going on behind the Mickey curtain,” said Patrick.
Additionally, last month Patrick charged the Senate Finance Committee with considering legislation to remove state investments from woke corporations.
“Texas must not allow our pension funds to be held hostage by woke corporate boards,” Patrick told Texas Scorecard at the time. “We need to keep our investment dollars with funds that make sound business decisions, not those who follow dictates from noisy progressives who do not represent the vast majority of Texans.”
Currently, Texas’ state pensions have $93 million invested in the company.
House Speaker Dade Phelan, however, rejected Patrick’s proposal in a speech shortly after, saying the House would be focused on “serious kitchen table issues” and lamenting the fact that his niece, who works for Disney, could be unemployed.
Republican primary voters have largely sided with Patrick, however, with 71 percent saying they disagree with Phelan’s criticism.
While Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has been silent on the issue, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is enjoying a popularity boost after he took action against the company, working with the Florida Legislature to revoke Disney’s self-governing status at the Disney World theme park in Orlando, which allows them to avoid paying taxes.
The same poll shows DeSantis leading the field of potential Republican presidential candidates if President Donald Trump decides not to run again. Fifty-six percent of those polled said they would support DeSantis, an 8-point bump from just one month ago.
The same poll showed Abbott with only 10 percent among Texas Republicans, and no change over the last month.