Paramore singer Hayley Williams blasts Ron DeSantis on stage

Hayley Williams
Hayley Williams Photo: Raph_PH/Wikimedia Commons

Paramore singer Hayley Williams took a swipe at supporters of Republican presidential hopeful and Ron DeSantis recently, making her distaste for the anti-LGBTQ+ Florida governor abundantly clear.

On Saturday, Paramore took the stage at the Adjacent Music Festival in Atlantic City. During a break between songs, Williams took a moment to get very real about her views on DeSantis, who announced his bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination last week in a disastrous Twitter Spaces conversation with the platform’s owner, Elon Musk.

Video posted on Twitter by a Paramore fan captured the moment.  

“I’ll be happy to tell you, I’m very f**king comfortable talking politics,” Williams told the crowd.

“If you vote for Ron DeSantis, you’re f**king dead to me,” she continued, as the crowd cheered. “Is that comfortable enough for anyone?”

According to Twitter user @pmore_bb, who posted the clip, Williams was responding to reports she said she’d seen online claiming that she is afraid to talk about politics while on tour with her band.

It’s unclear what Williams was referring to, but the singer has certainly waded into the political sphere in the past. She supported Beto O’Rourke’s 2022 Texas gubernatorial campaign, and Paramore donated a portion of the proceeds from their fall 2022 tour to organizations providing reproductive care and access to abortion services following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June 2022. Williams has appeared onstage wearing “Abort The Supreme Court” t-shirts.

She has also been an outspoken LGBTQ+ ally. In March, she performed at the Love Rising concert in Nashville, Tennessee, which benefited the Tennessee Equality Project, Inclusion Tennessee, Out Memphis, and the Tennessee Pride Chamber in Partnership with the Looking Out Foundation, following the passage of several anti-LGBTQ+ laws in the state, including the nation’s first statewide law banning drag performances.

“I can’t imagine being a person who spends their time thinking about how to limit anyone. I don’t understand that mindset,” she told GLAAD at the event. “My heart swells and it breaks for this community.”

DeSantis has, in recent years, staked his political career largely on limiting the rights of LGBTQ+ people. Last year, the Florida Republican signed the state’s notorious “Don’t Say Gay” bill into law, which banned elementary school teachers from mentioning LGBTQ+ issues and people in class. Earlier this month, he signed a slate of five anti-LGBTQ+ laws, including an expansion of “Don’t Say Gay” to cover all grade levels, a bill aimed a criminalizing trans people who use bathrooms that don’t correspond with the sex they were assigned at birth, and another that bans gender-affirming care for minors.  

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