One of the more glaring moments during yesterday’s signing ceremony for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ steaming turd of an “anti-riot” bill was when Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd decided to go out of his way to tell people how to vote.
Judd, who received a presidential appointment from the Trump Administration, warned new Florida residents not to "vote the stupid way you did up north," while holding up pictures of the beach and Walt Disney World.
"We're a special place, and there are millions and millions of people who like to come here. And quite frankly, we like to have them here. So we only want to share one thing as you move in hundreds a day: Welcome to Florida. But don't register to vote and vote the stupid way you did up north, you'll get what they got," said Judd.
Of course, the sea of white men surrounding Judd then erupted in applause.
It’s pretty hard not to interpret this statement as “Don’t come here if you’re going to vote for Democrats,” which is more than likely exactly what Judd meant — even though the only significant riot that occurred within the last year within a thousand miles of Florida was on Jan. 6, when Trump supporters, right-wing extremist groups, and red-pilled QAnon followers stormed the capital and killed two cops in the process.
Most importantly, one of Judd's own deputies was suspended and arrested for threatening to kill federal officers after the Capitol riot. At the time, officials said Polk County deputy Peter Heneen sent text messages saying he’d shoot “the feds” and make “the streets of DC run red with the blood of these tyrants.”
But Judd isn’t worried about that kind of stuff, and to further illustrate his Jim Crow TED talk, he then then held up photographs illustrating a "peaceful protest" and a "riot," which of course, was not a photo of Trump supporters breaking into the U.S. Capitol building.
The new law is problematic for a host of reasons, like the fact it curbs a local government's ability to cut police funding, denies protesters bail, and removes civil liability for running over someone during a protest (like what happened to Heather Heyer at the deadly right-wing Charlottesville protest and what almost happened in Tampa last September).
This is notable because Judd literally advocated for vigilante justice aimed at Black Lives Matter protesters last summer, and warned “looters” that his constituents “like guns” and will “blow you back out of the house with their guns.”
"Pay attention. We've got a new law," warned Judd at Monday’s bill signing. "And we're going to use it if you make us."
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