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Neo-Nazi demonstrations in Orlando draw law enforcement scrutiny and prompt political controversy

Gov. Ron DeSantis said Democrats are trying to use neo-Nazi demonstrations in Orlando to "smear" him. Image: Florida Channel


A small group of neo-Nazis demonstrating in Orlando over weekend have drawn condemnation from political leaders of both major parties and the attention of law enforcement.

On Saturday, 15 to 20 people carrying a banner for the National Socialist Movement stood along North Alafaya Trail with Nazi flags and signs.

They saluted Hitler, shouted, “White power!” and spewed anti-Semitic insults at motorists.

Some of them got into a fight with a driver in the middle of the road. The Orange County Sheriff’s Office says an investigation is ongoing.

Neo-Nazis also displayed signs, including an anti-Biden banner, on a bridge over Interstate 4.

Gov. Ron DeSantis says state law enforcement will “hold them accountable” for demonstrating on the overpass.

Democrats called on him to denounce the neo-Nazis after, according to news reports, his press secretary tweeted, with no factual basis, that they might really be Democratic staffers. She later deleted the tweet.

Now DeSantis accuses the Democrats of trying to smear him. 


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Joe Byrnes

About Joe Byrnes

Reporter

Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.

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