Over the last few years, Florida Republican and Governor Ron DeSantis has made more than a few waves in choosing how to run his state, particularly when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic. Naturally, his conservative, small government approach has given more than few liberals cause to want him out of office and soon.
Democratic Florida Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Nikki Fried appears to be one such individual, which is likely the main reason that she is fully expected to announce a run against DeSantis in the next gubernatorial race of 2022.
According to a discussion between MSNBC and Fried in March, “The governor has not been rational since day one. He has taken this very dogmatic approach to the pandemic. Opened up the state of Florida, never closed it down at the front end, never mandated a mask ordinance. He then tells our local governments to take ownership of the issue and then comes in and went, ‘Well, never mind, we’re not going to allow you to enforce your mandates and get rid of your fines and fees.’”
Fried claims that this is why “Florida isn’t a red state.”
Now, this would be a logical argument for Fried if those choices by DeSantis had left the state in utter chaos and with higher-than-average COVID case numbers and deaths.
But that’s not been the case.
In fact, even though the state has the absolute highest number of elderly or at-risk citizens of any state, not to mention a high population overall, the lack of mandates and defense of personal freedoms by DeSantis has kept case rates well within the nationwide average.
In addition, the education of the Sunshine State’s children has been allowed to continue, and businesses are permitted to keep their doors and economy open.
As DeSantis says, COVID procedures in the state are among the main reasons it is only growing redder by the day.
He noted in a conversation with other GOP governors on a recent “Hannity” town hall event, “So it’s interesting in Florida, like, the media at the beginning of this said, ‘Florida is bad,’ and I think it’s because they wanted to damage Trump in Florida, wanted to damage me, so they just kept saying it was bad, even though the facts didn’t say it.”
He continued, noting that all those agreeing with “those phony narratives” weren’t likely coming to Florida. Only those who “see through it” are. And according to DeSantis, “they’re registering as Republicans overwhelming. And I also have come across a lot of people who, quite frankly, were Democrats.”
The Florida governor explained that he has spoken with a large number of people who used to claim to be Democrats. But because of recent party changes and the leftward push to keep schools and businesses closed indefinitely, many are ‘re-evaluat(ing) some of their prior commitments” and changing sides.
DeSantis said, “And if you have a political party that puts the interests of teachers unions over the interests of kids being able to just access an education at all, that tells you all you need to know about the modern Democratic Party.”
Another fact pointing to Fried’s illogical notion that Florida isn’t red is her very own Twitter biography, which states that she is the “only statewide elected” Democrat in the Sunshine State. Let’s just say it’s not a good look to claim a supposed fact that your very own biography contradicts…
There is, of course, the not-so-small matter of both state Senate and House chambers having a broad Republican majority. And that majority is only expected to grow as 2020 census results have given the state another congressional seat due to its 14.6 percent population increase.
And, as DeSantis mentioned above, a large portion of those coming in are seeking the freedoms of a not-so-liberal state, indicating that they will put yet another conservative representative in Congress.
In addition, a Florida Chamber of Commerce poll, which was released earlier this month, points out that DeSantis is likely to still be the governor of choice, as he has a 55 percent approval rating, according to Politico.
So much for Florida not being a red state, huh?