‘Judea and Samaria are not occupied,’ DeSantis affirms at Republican Jewish conference

“I don’t care what the State Department said. They are not occupied territory; it is disputed territory,” DeSantis stated.

By World Israel News Staff

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who in the recent mid-term elections received the highest percentage of the Jewish vote of any Republican candidate in the history of the state, was warmly received Saturday night at the Republican Jewish Coalition conference in Las Vegas.

“If you look at our record on issues related to Israel and supporting the Jewish community, it is second to none,” he said.

Considered to be a strong candidate for the 2024 U.S. presidential election, he affirmed that Judea and Samaria, the biblical homeland of the Jewish people, is not “occupied” by the Jewish state.

“We were the first statewide elected officials to do public events in Judea and Samaria,” DeSantis said. We know those are thousands of years of connection to the Jewish people.

“I don’t care what the State Department said, they are not occupied territory; it is disputed territory.”

DeSantis – like Nikki Haley and other popular figures thought to be potential GOP presidential candidates – has not announced his candidacy; to date, only former President Donald Trump has done so.

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In his 25-minute speech, the Florida governor addressed key Republican talking points, such as the party’s opposition to defunding the police. And he reiterated his stand on issues important to the Jewish community.

“If you look at our record on issues related to Israel and supporting the Jewish community, it is second to none,” he stated.

“When I first became governor, one of the first things we did was fight back against AIRBNB, which was discriminating against Israeli Jews, and we won that fight against AIRBNB.”

In 2019, the company announced it would ban listings of Jewish-owned properties in Judea and Samaria but later reversed its decision.

Also, DeSantis noted, “We signed legislation combating antisemitism. We are not going to allow the universities in the State of Florida to become hotbeds of anti-Jewish sentiment, like they have all across this country.”