Randy Fine swaps 2024 endorsement to Donald Trump, dissing longtime ally Ron DeSantis

Image 10-24-23 at 3.49 PM
DeSantis has not done enough to combat antisemitism, Fine argued in a Washington Times op-ed.

The Legislature’s only Jewish Republican and longtime ally of Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared he’s switching his allegiance to former President Donald Trump in the 2024 GOP Presidential Primary.

The flip spurred a round of bitter invective between the Governor and Rep. Randy Fine, who represents south Brevard County.

Fine has been the Governor’s lead culture warrior on the House floor. But in a Washington Times op-ed — and on the social media site X — Fine accused DeSantis of not doing enough to combat antisemitism. The switch from supporting DeSantis to Trump comes after Fine on Oct. 13 specifically asked the Governor to use the legislative tools available to him to put a stop to the pro-Palestinian demonstrations happening on state-run universities and colleges in the wake of the violence in Israel.

DeSantis just shrugged off his call and passed the responsibility to college and university Presidents, Fine wrote. 

“The past two weeks have made me realize our choice as Jews is simple,” the op-ed reads. “We can vote for the Governor who says all the right things, or we can vote for the President who actually does them. When it comes to action, Donald Trump has never let us down.”

Late in the afternoon, however, the DeSantis War Room posted a story about how Fine would be getting his wish and all higher education executives would be directed to terminate student chapters expressing support for Hamas terrorists.

Earlier in the day, though, when DeSantis, in New Hampshire, was asked about Fine’s flip and, according to POLITICO reporter Lisa Kashinsky, called it “pure politics.”

“He was up for a presidency of FAU (Florida Atlantic University). He didn’t get it. Now he’s running for Senate. He’s trying to ingratiate himself. Totally ridiculous,” POLITICO reporter Gary Fineout quoted DeSantis saying in an X post, with the quote attributed to Kashinsky.

Fine dismissed those comments.

“I won’t dignify Ron’s failure to protect the Jewish people as sour grapes,” Fine said in a text.

State University Chancellor Ray Rodrigues said in a text that as far as he knows, the first result of the now-stalled search for FAU’s President, which did not include Fine as a finalist, is still ongoing, “Inspector General is still conducting interviews. Investigation is ongoing,” Rodrigues said.

Fine’s op-ed also drubs DeSantis for the delay in the state’s Holocaust memorial and his failure to respond to the sporadic yet persistent public appearances of neo-Nazis demonstrating in roads and overpasses. Democrats have been calling on DeSantis to denounce the demonstrations, without Fine adding to the chorus — until now.

“Eighteen months ago, my Nazi ‘friends’ showed up in Florida. They assaulted a Rabbi. They beat up a Jew who yelled back at one of their protests,” Fine wrote. “They commandeered highway overpasses to illegally hang banners saying ‘Gas the Jews.’ They have tormented Jews at their homes with filth. Until a few weeks ago, Governor DeSantis said almost nothing. And worse, he did almost nothing.”

Fine’s op-ed was published days after a four-day Special Session was called to consider DeSantis’ proposed Iran sanctions and other action to show support for Israel.

DeSantis, on the campaign trail, highlighted his efforts regarding Israel, such as using his emergency power to tap into state money to bring Americans back from the chaos in Israel.

“What other Governor has rescued people from Israel?” DeSantis said, according to POLITICO. “I mean, like I marshaled resources. We brought back close to 700 people.”

Fine wrote of the threat he and his family have come under.

“I wrote this while just down the street a group of my fellow Americans openly rallied for the death of my children. Just two miles from where Ron DeSantis lives,” the op-ed reads.

Just before 4 p.m., though, Fine reacted to the news that student chapters at Florida-run universities and colleges supporting Hamas would be terminated. It suggested he was glad that DeSantis had seen the light and addressed the Governor directly.

“While I am glad it is happening now, it is sad that you couldn’t do the right thing because it was the right thing and only did it to minimize the political fallout of today’s events,” Fine wrote.


Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics contributed to this report.

Anne Geggis

Anne Geggis is a South Florida journalist who began her career in Vermont and has worked at the Sun-Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Gainesville Sun covering government issues, health and education. She was a member of the Sun-Sentinel team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Parkland high school shooting. You can reach her on Twitter @AnneBoca or by emailing [email protected].


  • Michael K

    October 24, 2023 at 4:12 pm

    Somebody’s got their panties in a bunch over not getting a cushy sinecure college presidency like Corcoran.

    • Ocean Joe

      October 24, 2023 at 4:28 pm

      I dont know what sinecure means, but otherwise, exactly.
      Randy Fine is odious. He said nothing about Desantis or other Republicans refusal to condemn nazis at the time. We are lucky he didn’t get the chance to ruin FAU.

      Palestinian Americans and those here legally have first amendment rights to chant in support of blood thirsty killers, honor killings, blowing up buses, attacking the WTC, blowing up 294 Marines in Beirut, slaughter of one another, the Achille Lauro, kidnapping of Olympians in Munich, of throwing gay folks and their political enemies off the roof, chasing half of Syria’s people to Europe, and of course handing out candy and celebrating the slaughter of innocents. I assume Desantis thinks that way about the nazis since he is always silent to their hatespeech.

      Look, which Arab country do you want to live in? Syria? Iraq? Lebanon? Yemen? Libya? If you’re OK with an autocrat Oman or Morocco would be nice maybe. That strife and tribal killings of Sunni and Shia is what awaits a middle east without Israel. As Israel waits and folks beg them not to go in Hamas keeps firing rockets. American democracy is not helped by Randy Fine trying to squelch opposing voices no matter how offensive they are.

      • My Take

        October 25, 2023 at 5:39 pm

        While all of it is legal, we should be careful to recognize that which is for protection of the innocent, or even the larger qiestion of territory rights. If no violence against civilains is proposed or condoned, don’t pretend ot is (l I ike DeSSlantis).

      • Dont Say FLA

        October 26, 2023 at 5:52 pm

        Sinecure: A position or office that requires little or no work but provides a salary. IOW, Florida’s Governor and his college president picks and his whole campaign too.

  • My Take

    October 24, 2023 at 4:27 pm

    Excellent. He has to be out of the running for FAU now.

    • My Take

      October 24, 2023 at 5:37 pm

      The IG’s FAU search “investigation” report is due in a few weeks.
      Enough time for DeSScumtis to insert another stooge if they reopen the search?

  • My Take

    October 24, 2023 at 4:39 pm

    Taking the text literally:
    ÙnAmerican Fine wants to ban pro-PALESTINIAN student protests, clearly unconstitutional.
    What is happening is action against pro-Hamas, a declared terrorist group.

  • Michael K

    October 24, 2023 at 5:59 pm

    But Randy seems just Fine spewing hate and lies against LGBTQ people.

  • Have some integrity

    October 24, 2023 at 8:14 pm

    Fine should be ashamed to support a man convicted of rape and fraud, who led a coup, who has 91 felonies against him with 3 lawyers who have rolled over already, and proof that he has told our national secrets let alone had them illegally at Maralardo. Cult above country Fine. Cult above constitution. Cult above honesty and integrity

  • Elmo

    October 24, 2023 at 8:36 pm

    Ron DeSantis has refused to condemn Nazi demonstrators in Florida for years.. Why would he? They are the core of his base.

  • rick whitaker

    October 24, 2023 at 9:51 pm

    florida seems to be over run with maga cultist, what’s that all about

    • My Take

      October 25, 2023 at 11:27 am

      I’ve wondered the same.

  • My Take

    October 24, 2023 at 10:45 pm

    A kook and a cultist!
    Let the junior-high squabble continue.
    For our amusement.
    Call Fine “Dually”
    And Ron “Reichsmarschall””

  • My Take

    October 24, 2023 at 11:15 pm

    Ì’ll bet there are huge sighs of relief at FAU.
    But still a bit of worry about what’s next.

    • dipshierus

      October 24, 2023 at 11:56 pm

      SOMEBODY IN THE GOP needs to WISE THE HELL UP and SHOW the immigrants who will be voting that the DEMOCRAT PARTY is for KILLING BABIES IN THE WOMB…and remind them that the earlies premature baby born in the Guiness Book of World’s REcords is 4.5 months old…GOP needs to get the new illegal immigrants signed up for REPUBLICAN VOTE based on anti abortion (aka killing unborn babies0) vote…and stop being so WEAK about this issue. Also, most immigrants don’t want their kids being taught they can mutilate themselves if they are confused and think they are another sex. EDUCATE THESE PEOPLE that the DEMS want to brainwash and get them to see what REPUBLICANS STAND FOR. Look, you can’t get all of them to agree, but those who have the same views, yes you can. Don’t get Dems lure them into their pit of destruction.

      • This Is Fine

        October 25, 2023 at 5:41 am

        Typical Christian comment; false and violent.

        Back to church, Christian.

      • rick whitaker

        October 25, 2023 at 6:47 am

        dipshit, you are a cultist. why can’t you stay in your silo and read your book of fairy tales ( bible ). immigrants aren’t stupid as you want them to be. most know that democratic policies are to their advantage. you christians want everyone to be as closed-minded as they are. you don’t always get what you want, especially if what you want is garbage thinking. ” what the republicans stand for” is what trump wants. that is to commit crimes and get away with it . maga cultist like you want that, the rest of the voters and immigrants don’t want that. i would tell you to wise up, but you seem too far gone.

      • Silly Wabbit

        October 25, 2023 at 12:16 pm

        You kwazy.

  • My Take

    October 25, 2023 at 12:25 am

    Boy, would that name be easy to mock.

    And tell the immigrants that Republicans hate them and want to shoot them at the border if they carry so much as a shoebox.

  • My Take

    October 25, 2023 at 5:23 am

    I wonder what Florida’s large number of black citizèns think of a Holocaust memorial to a foreign horror when public school history classes are not allowed to teach accurately of their ancestors’ centurìes of hell right here.

  • Biscuit

    October 25, 2023 at 12:14 pm

    Newsflash from the Breaking Wind Dog News Bureau, Dog Island, Florida: GOP Rep. Randy Fine has officially declared he is no longer and idiot and is now a moron.
    Excuse me.

  • My Take

    October 25, 2023 at 8:15 pm

    Who would have ever guessed that Hamas would save FAU‽

  • My Take

    October 27, 2023 at 5:19 pm

    My guess is that Repugnant Randy’s behavior has triggered antisemitism. As unfair as that is to others. Detest Randy for bring himsèlf. You need go no farther.

  • My Take

    October 28, 2023 at 10:07 pm

    The Space Coast Rocket —

    “A senior official close to the governor . . .

    “Randy and multiple intermediaries went to the governor’s office begging to get him the FAU job. They agreed to help but it’s no secret that the Board of Trustees wouldn’t even consider him. Leadership and everyone was eager to be rid of him in the Legislature,” the official, who was granted anonymity because they were not authorized to speak, said.

Comments are closed.


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