Last night, Disneyland held its first-ever Pride Nite at the resort. In attendance was California Governor Gavin Newsom. Newsom, who was essentially at odds with The Walt Disney Company during the COVID-19 pandemic by not allowing Disneyland and other large theme park operators to reopen for more than a year, has now fully embraced the company.
Newsom’s attendance at the Disneyland Pride Nite was the first time that the Governor has been spotted at Disneyland since the COVID-19 pandemic and was a very public backing of Disney after what can only be described as a political mess in Florida.
Newsom’s office tweeted the following:
For the first time, California celebrated Pride Nite at Disneyland.
Our inclusivity & acceptance attract talent & ideas that drive our economic growth & make us a hotspot for world-leading companies like Disney to grow & prosper.
All are welcome here.
Following a tense relationship between Newsom and Disney a couple years ago, the Governor is not only fully embracing the Disney of today, but eagle-eyed fans will notice that the piece of concept art behind Newsom and Disney CEO Bob Iger and Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro is a literal painting of the (proposed) future at the Disneyland Resort.
The City of Anaheim has yet to approve the DisneylandForward expansion plans, but the photo below is about as good of an endorsement as Disney could’ve hoped for as it looks to invest billions at the Disneyland Resort in the coming decade and beyond.
By contrast, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has launched a presidential bid based partially on his punishment of Disney. When Disney decided on inclusion, DeSantis decided on a coordinated effort by state and local government to retaliate against Disney. A series of bills have been pushed through the Florida Legislature that have uniquely targeted Disney, and the bill sponsors have even said as much. DeSantis didn’t even let the paper cool from the printers before signing the retaliatory bills.
Amidst the hostile actions of DeSantis’ government, Disney has decided to forego investing a reported $1 billion in a sprawling Lake Nona campus that would’ve brought 2,000 high-wage jobs to Central Florida. Newsom didn’t mince words when the cancelation of the Lake Nona campus was announced:
Authoritarian policies have consequences. This announcement is a victory for California, and the tens of thousands of Disney employees who know they can live in a state where they are respected and safe.
Still in the balance is a $17 billion investment in the Walt Disney World theme parks over the next decade. Statements from the Walt Disney World President all the way to Iger have indicated that Disney hopes to invest heavily in Florida, but it isn’t a done deal. In fact, we are still waiting for D’Amaro’s Blue Sky concepts to get the green light. By all accounts, the lights in Florida have turned yellow and might even be a shade of red.
When you put DeSantis’ actions up against the admittedly very recent actions of Newsom, there is a line clearer and possibly more impactful than the Mississippi River in the Marvel contract with Universal Orlando.
As always, keep checking back with us here at BlogMickey.com as we continue to bring you the latest news, photos, and info from around the Disney Parks!