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DeSantis PAC Launches New Attack On LGBTQ+ Community Days After Embarrassing Failure

Election 2024

DeSantis PAC Launches New Attack On LGBTQ+ Community Days After Embarrassing Failure

Never Back Down, a super PAC supporting Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign, has just released an ad that attempts to paint Donald Trump as a staunch ally of the transgender community despite having been one of the most transphobic presidents in U.S. history.

The ad highlights Trump’s support for Jenna Talackova, a transgender Canadian model, who wanted to compete in Miss Universe Canada but was ineligible because only “naturally born” women were allowed to compete at the time. Trump, who owned Miss Universe in 2012, was supportive of a rules change to allow Talackova in.

“TRUMP: LET BIOLOGICAL MEN COMPETE AGAINST WOMEN,” the video declares while showing media clips from 2012.

The ad repeatedly shows on-screen quotes from Trump that cross out his usage of “she/her” pronouns and replaces them with “he/him” pronouns to refer to Talackova.

“Why are biological men competing against women now?” Never Back Down captioned the ad on Twitter. “Because Trump sided with the transgender agenda.”

However, the ad fails to highlight the anti-LGBTQ+ actions Trump took while in the White House, including banning transgender people from the military, denying asylum to trans people, removing all protections for LGBTQ+ students, appointing judges that would oppose LGBTQ+ rights, allowing homeless shelters to discriminate against transgender people and revoking visas of unmarried gay diplomats.

As ACLU communications strategist Gillian Branstetter notes: “Trump told homeless shelters to reject trans people, told federal prisons to ignore the risks of incarcerated trans people being raped, and let trans asylum seekers die in ICE detention. He removed protections for transgender students on Betsy Devos’s first day. He told SCOTUS that employers could fire people for being trans with impunity. He told doctors they could turn away trans people. He told the UN to scrub the word ‘gender’ from reports on violence.”

The PAC ad is eerily similar to a mystery mailer sent to Iowa households over the weekend thanking Trump for how he “stood up for MARRIAGE EQUALITY and TRANS RIGHTS while many Republican leaders are fighting against gay marriage and trans rights.” The mailer also thanked Trump for permitting Talackova to participate in the Miss Universe pageant.

Earlier this month, DeSantis’ campaign shared a bizarre ad featuring oiled-up, shirtless bodybuilders inter-spliced with images of DeSantis and statements celebrating DeSantis’ record attacking LGBTQ+ people in his state. The ad was quietly removed a week later after sparking bipartisan backlash and mockery over its homoerotic imagery.

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