Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) unveiled on Wednesday a new “civilian volunteer force” called the Florida State Guard that he and the legislature hope will supplement the National Guard but not be subject to federal mandates like COVID vaccination that have caused problems and led to discharges in the federal military.
The legislation that created the State Guard cost $10 million, a significant amount more than the $3.5 million initial proposal.
DeSantis hopes to attract some of these discharged military members, like Navy SEALs and pilots, to the State Guard where they can serve without conforming to onerous mandates.
He complained that the federal government can take a state’s guardsmen and send them “around the world” and to other states, so that they aren’t in their home state when they might be needed.
Commenting on complaints by the feds about the state guard’s creation, DeSantis pointed out that 20 other states have state guards, so Florida is not doing something unusual.
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