The funds were a part of the $109.9 billion budget the legislature approved and were allocated in part for a new spring training facility for the MLB team. The facility in question would have cost $35 million.
Citing a need to protect the state “against what very well maybe a Biden-induced recession,” DeSantis said he could not support sending state funds to the team.
However, his decision also came just days after the Rays came out publicly in support of gun control. A source familiar with DeSantis’s thinking said the governor did not want to reward the team for “politicizing” recent tragedies, including the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting.
“We all deserve to be safe — in schools, grocery stores, places of worship, our neighborhoods, houses and America. The most recent mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde have shaken us to the core,” a spokesperson for the team said.
“The Tampa Bay Rays are mourning these heartbreaking tragedies that took the lives of innocent children and adults,” the team said. “This cannot become normal. We cannot become numb. We cannot look the other way. We all know, if nothing changes, nothing changes.”
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 26, 2022
The team also pledged a $50,000 donation to a far-left gun control group called Everytown for Gun Safety.
The Rays aren’t the only MLB team that has endorsed gun control in the wake of the Uvalde shooting.
Instead of providing coverage of the team’s games, the New York Yankees’ social media team decided to dedicate its page to so-called facts about gun violence, demanding that lawmakers “do something.”
Firearms were the leading cause of death for American children and teens in 2020.
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) May 26, 2022