Florida's new Trump-backed governor seeks to broaden appeal

Florida's new Trump-backed governor seeks to broaden appeal
Governor Ron DeSantis, center, John Morgan, left, and U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz, right, during a press conference to pressure state legislators and give them a mid-March deadline to repeal a law that prohibits smokable forms of medical marijuana at Kraft Azalea Garden in Winter Park, Fla., Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. (Willie J. Allen Jr./Tampa Bay Times via AP)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida’s new Republican governor rode to office with the strong support of President Donald Trump, leaving some to wonder if he’d be a partisan leader.

But in Ron DeSantis’ first two weeks in office, he’s surprised many by quickly taking up issues with broad appeal.

He announced an aggressive plan to address environmental problems, posthumously pardoned four black men accused of raping a white teenager nearly 70 years ago and is demanding the Republican-led Legislature rewrite the state’s medical marijuana law to allow smokable forms of the plant.

DeSantis won the Republican nomination in a very partisan campaign almost entirely based on his and Trump’s mutual admiration. But now even Democrats say they’re surprised at his actions since taking office earlier this month.