Florida gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis is racking up appearances with all types of far-right figures, adding to the list of white supremacists and anti-Muslim activists a prominent anti-LGBTQ leader.
According to The Miami New Times, the Republican candidate attended the Black Professionals Summit with Raynard Jackson.
> At this point, it seems like a safe bet to assume everyone DeSantis or his campaign associates with in public is some kind of a right-wing extremist.
> Take, for instance, D.C. Republican strategist, cable-news pundit, and hater of LGBTQ people Raynard Jackson, who has spent years railing against homosexuals — and even claimed gay leaders were using the Pulse nightclub massacre to spread a "radical homosexual agenda." This past Friday, DeSantis shared the stage with Jackson at a Black Professionals Summit in Miami, where Jackson berated a woman who asked the GOP gubernatorial candidate a challenging question about the school-to-prison pipeline.
> But what really seems to get Jackson going are the gays. He's been fervently and angrily tweeting and blogging about the evils of the "homosexual lobby" for years. He seems to hate gay people, trans people, gender-nonbinary people, and anyone who doesn't believe that men and women should get married at age 19 and pump out 33 kids.
Much of Jackson’s anti-LGBTQ material surfaces on Twitter and in blog posts, but he has also taken to the pages of The Washington Post to spread his views:
> He once wrote a Washington Postop-ed complaining that the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation spends its time "defaming others" and tries to give LGBTQ Americans a "special status" in the law above other people. Jackson wrote the op-ed to defend former CNN commentator Roland Martin, whom the network suspended after Martin posted numerous tweets implying that gay or feminine men should be physically assaulted.
And in 2013, as noted by Right Wing Watch, Jackson took aim at the Boy Scouts of America for allowing openly gay members in their ranks:
> How can you train youth in responsible citizenship, character development and self-reliance when you have adult cowards voting to shift the group’s moral compass to make radical homosexuals feel good?
> You don’t give kids choices at that age; you give them direction. Kids should not be used by adults as pawns in an adult game perpetrated by immoral homosexual activists.
> Furthermore, when did morals, values and beliefs become subject to the latest opinion poll or political whim? For more than 100 years, the BSA has been very clear in its position to exclude homosexuality, atheism and agnosticism.
> It is estimated that gays account for 3 percent of the U.S. population. Assuming that percentage applies to youth as well, that means the BSA has decided to make 97 percent of its troop members uncomfortable in order to satisfy the perverted needs of 3 percent.