Portrait of Ron DeSantis

DeSantis Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Ron DeSantis on The Mark Levin Show: "On day one, we're going to return the military to serve its core function."

July 20, 2023

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Ron DeSantis joined Mark Levin on The Mark Levin Show. The highlights are below.

Listen to the full interview HERE.

On confronting the threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party:

"Biden's people, they think China is just like a friendly competition. No, it's not. China's looking to dominate the world. They are, to our generation, what the Soviet Union represented to the post World War II generation. They're the foremost geopolitical threat that this country faces. And they're the most formidable adversary we faced since the Soviet Union. In some respects, it's a more, it's a bigger challenge than the Soviets, at least in this respect. China's strength has been built off American policy empowering them economically over many decades. There was a decision made to grant them most favored nation trade status, put them in the World Trade Organization. Corporate America has subcontracted out so much to China, and they've gotten rich in corporate America. It hasn't been good for our country. It's been very, very good for China. So, the economic integration that we have, we never had that with the Soviet Union. The dependency of our country on the Communist Chinese economy for key things that matter, pharmaceuticals, ammunition, all these things, puts us in a very precarious situation. So yes, we need more hard power in the Pacific. At the end of the day, what Xi respects is he respects strength, and if we're projecting strength, working with our allies, they're going to respect that. We have got to declare independence from them economically, because that is what's fueling this military buildup. This is a problem that's been created by American elites who took their eye off the ball. They may have gotten rich off this, but it has not been good for our country."

How he curbed CCP influence in Florida as governor:

"Part of countering China is yes, military, economic independence and then recognizing their cultural influence. So in Florida, for example, we eliminated Confucius Institutes from universities. They're not allowed in Florida. That's what the CCP will use to spew propaganda. We also prohibited land purchases by the CCP in the state of Florida; farmland, land near military bases, the whole nine yards, done. We need to do that stuff nationwide, because China's smart, they infiltrate and they exert a lot of influence over our society, I think, in ways that the Soviet Union was never able to do even at the height of the Cold War."

On restoring the military to serve its core function:

"We're at a generational low in recruiting. We're at the lowest level since the draft ended after the Vietnam War. And the reason is- I think there's a number of reasons, but one of the reasons is the military has lost its way. They're indulging in social experimentation, political ideology, a woke agenda, that's taking the mission off of the core function of the military and focusing on all these extraneous things. I'm a Navy veteran, as you mentioned, and I've seen the Navy use drag queens to recruit. We've seen all these different examples of what's going on at the service academies, and what's going on in different services, and morale is low, they've driven a lot of warriors off. And we just can't be in a situation where we're going to be able to counter the threat from China if we're elevating social experimentation over mission accomplishment. When we have things like drag queens for recruiting in the military, China is laughing at us. They know that that's a sign of American weakness. And so all this stuff with DEI, all these other things, we're going to rip it out on day one, we're going to return the military to serve its core function. There's a difference between military life and military leadership, and civilian life and civilian leadership. Right now, what they're trying to do is they're trying to make the military be a reflection of how Goldman Sachs would operate, or consultant firm, or things like that. That is not what you want. You want the military to have a different set of values that are distinct from civilian society, and you want to be able to promote people based on merit and based on whether they're actually moving the ball forward. Right now, you may be able to be a one star just based on merit. But to get that second, third and fourth star, if you don't toe the political line, you will simply not advance in today's military. I don't think General Patton could probably make it past colonel in today's military."

Ron DeSantis, DeSantis Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Ron DeSantis on The Mark Levin Show: "On day one, we're going to return the military to serve its core function." Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/364240

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