Featured Image
 YouTube screenshot

(LifeSiteNews) — Florida Governor Ron DeSantis forced California Governor Gavin Newsom to confront pornographic content in the classroom.

Gov. DeSantis held up a page from the pornographic book Gender Queer during last night’s “Red vs. Blue State Debate” hosted on Fox News by Sean Hannity. DeSantis is currently running for president, and Newsom is considered a possible last-minute replacement for President Joe Biden or Vice President Kamala Harris.

“This is a book that’s in some of the schools in California — in Florida, it’s not consistent with our standards — it’s called Gender Queer. Some of it’s blacked out. You probably would not be able to put this on air,” DeSantis said. The Republican governor signed legislation that ensures students in K-3 are not exposed to inappropriate sexual content and LGBT ideology in the classroom. The law was later expanded by his administration to include K-12.

“This is pornography. It’s cartoons. It’s aimed at children and it’s wrong,” he said. “So, this should not be in schools. When people on the left say that somehow you are ‘banning books’ by removing this from a young kid’s classroom — this is not age appropriate.”

In response, Newsom repeated the falsehood that books by people like black poet Amanda Gorman are also banned in Florida, without directly addressing the appropriateness of Gender Queer being available to minors. In fact, one Miami-Dade school decided the poetry was more suitable for middle schoolers than elementary school students.

Hannity followed up by reading the specifics of other pornographic books that contain “graphic descriptions” of sexual content.

“That’s not part of the curriculum,” Gov. Newsom said, before saying DeSantis was on a “book banning binge.”

While he criticized DeSantis for his law restricting minors from learning about inappropriate content, the far-left governor adamantly claimed that his own schools do not teach sexualized content to K-3 children. However, California school districts, including the San Ramon Valley Unified School District, have been found to carry Gender Queer and other pornographic books.

Newsom and other California authorities have threatened school districts with investigations if they decide that some books are not appropriate for all ages.

DeSantis knocks Newsom for harboring gender-confused kids

The Florida Republican also criticized Newsom for a law in California that allows gender-confused minors to undergo harmful surgical and chemical mutilation without their parents’ consent.

He noted that parents in Iowa or New Hampshire or South Carolina (early primary states), for example, can have their children run away to California and get a “sex-change operation” without their knowledge or consent.

“That is radical, that is extreme,” DeSantis said.

In response, Newsom tried to say “these kids just want to live,” while the Republican governor continued his answer.

The two also differ sharply on the issue of abortion. Gov. Newsom holds the official stance of the Democratic Party, which is that abortion should be legal all throughout pregnancy, including up to the moment of birth. He also believes that taxpayers should help fund the killing of innocent preborn babies. Newsom, a nominal Catholic, also tried to justify his support for the direct killing of innocent human life by quoting Scripture.

Gov. DeSantis has signed legislation in Florida to prohibit abortions after six weeks. The law is not perfect but would prevent about half of legal abortions. Chemical abortion drugs have made it harder for states to completely eliminate the killing of preborn babies.

“Do you support any restrictions on abortion at all,” Hannity, who supports legal abortion, asked, with specific reference to babies in the 7th, 8th, and 9th month.

Newsom said it should be up to the woman, her doctor, and her “conscience.”

READ: Dobbs was no pyrrhic victory: tens of thousands of lives have been saved from abortion

“I believe in a culture of life,” DeSantis asked in response to why he supports a ban on abortions at six weeks versus 15 weeks.

The pair also clashed over Newsom’s close ties to China and the homelessness problem in California.

DeSantis also noted that Newsom’s father-in-law moved to Florida.

“I was talking to a fella who had made the move to Florida from California and he was telling me about how much better governed it is, better budget, all this stuff,” DeSantis said last night. “And then he said, ‘Oh and I’m Gavin Newsom’s father-in-law.’ So we count Gavin’s father-in-law as one of the people who have moved from California to Florida.”