CJR Staff
July 22, 2023

DeSantis Says Ending Biden's Woke Policies Will Restore Military

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis made a commitment to put an end to what he perceives as rampant wokeness in the military if elected president in 2024.

DeSantis, who is currently trailing former President Donald Trump in polls for potential Republican presidential candidates, believes such a move will boost the flagging morale and recruiting experienced by the armed forces under President Joe Biden's administration.

Speaking in South Carolina, DeSantis unveiled his "Mission First" proposal aimed at reorienting the Pentagon's focus.

DeSantis Calls Out Biden

"I'm a Navy veteran who served in Iraq, and I take immense pride in having worn our nation's uniform," DeSantis shared. "Yet, many veterans today tell me they wouldn't want their children or grandchildren to join the current military."

DeSantis attributed this sentiment to the adoption of what he called "social experimentation" in the military, including controversial recruitment strategies and a focus on climate change, which he believes has overshadowed its primary responsibilities. He criticized these trends for having pushed away many dedicated servicemen and women and derided the Biden administration's COVID-19 vaccination mandates as "unscientific."

According to DeSantis, the military's recruitment challenge is the most severe it has been since 1973 when the draft was abolished following the end of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. He stressed that the U.S. can't compete with powers like China without attracting high-caliber individuals to military service.

The governor expressed concern that U.S. military focus on 'wokeness' and carbon emissions reduction strategies invites mockery from China, which, he argued, prioritizes practical military readiness over these issues.

DeSantis charged that the current administration's policies have placed the U.S. military at a disadvantage, leading to a recruitment deficit and diminished morale.

The candidate offered a hopeful outlook, promising that the aforementioned difficulties would improve under his presidency. "On day one, we will dispel wokeness from the military," he affirmed. "We'll eliminate divisive diversity, equity, and inclusion programs that foster identity politics, returning focus to the collective good of the unit, rather than individual identities."

DeSantis assured that his approach would reinvigorate the military's mission focus, triggering much-needed changes in the top brass, and subsequently lead to a resurgence in recruitment.

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