First Read

Support for Israel continues from Florida's elected officials

DeSantis declared a state of emergency to help Floridians caught in the conflict.

Gaza comes under sustained bombardment by Israel after Hamas attacks.

Gaza comes under sustained bombardment by Israel after Hamas attacks. Photo by Ahmad Hasaballah/Getty Images

Florida’s Republican elected state officials continued their support for Israel coming up on one week after Hamas’ coordinated attacks on the country by land, air and sea. Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday signed an executive order declaring a state of emergency that enables the Florida Division of Emergency Management “to bring Floridians home and transport necessary supplies to Israel.” 

DeSantis’ office explained in a statement that “there are more than 20,000 Americans, including Floridians, in Israel who wish to return home but are unable to do so. This executive order allows the state to carry out logistical, rescue and evacuation operations to keep its residents safe.” It includes “enter(ing) into agreements with any and all (federal) agencies” and activating the Florida National Guard. 

Also, state CFO Jimmy Patronis said he would invest an additional $25 million into Israeli bonds and “pledged law enforcement resources” from his Department of Financial Services’ Division of Investigative & Forensic Services. “As we get closer to the weekend there will be more parties and social gatherings, so I want to make sure my agency is leaning forward in case our services are needed,” Patronis said in a statement. 

And U.S. Sen. Rick Scott said he will meet today with Israel Consul General to Florida Maor Elbaz-Starinsky and Jewish leaders in South Florida, then host a press conference “to stand in solidarity with Israel and Florida’s Jewish community.” That’s at 2:45 p.m., Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center & Tauber Academy, 20400 N.E. 30th Ave., Aventura. 

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