Former President Donald Trump has launched a new line of attack against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in a recent interview on the Full Send Podcast.
Donald Trump blasts Gov. Ron DeSantis’ handling of the Covid pandemic in a new interview.
“He didn’t do well with Covid — he had more deaths than almost every country, in Florida. I hate to say it because Florida is my state, but he didn’t do well.” pic.twitter.com/PeDUkSsefN
— Becker News (@NewsBecker) April 21, 2023
Trump strongly criticized Governor DeSantis’ criminal record, as well as his handling of the Covid pandemic:
Well, actually, if you look at the numbers, he didn’t do a great job. If you look at the numbers, it has a high level of crime. Very high, right at the top. Almost at the top. I think it has good publicity, although now people are starting, because I’m putting out the Covid numbers, it didn’t do well with Covid, it had more deaths than almost every country, in Florida. I hate to say it because Florida is my state, but he didn’t do well.
It’s really, it’s really interesting, I don’t want to knock anybody, but what it did well was the PR, because the numbers weren’t what they intended.
It’s unclear if Trump is accusing DeSantis of misrepresenting Florida’s Covid death data, in a similar fashion to discredited whistleblower Rebekah Jones, or if she’s simply going by the official numbers.
Florida recorded the third highest number of Covid deaths in the country, but these inflated statistics are mainly due to the state’s large and elderly population. California and Texas, both with higher populations, recorded higher death tolls.
If you judge DeSantis’ performance by death rate per capita, Florida had only the 18th highest figure. If you further adjust for age, due to the fact that Covid is much more deadly for older people, then Florida is in the middle of the pack.
In fact, Florida ranks 31st in age-adjusted Covid-related deaths.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has been widely praised on the right and condemned on the left for his handling of the Covid pandemic. But his stewardship of the state comes down to the perception among many that Florida’s governor largely respected citizens’ rights, avoided strict lockdown measures and preserved economic vitality at a time when much of the nation was recovering from the crisis.
This dispute brings closer examination of the respective handling of the Covid pandemic by both Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former President Donald Trump.
Below is a timeline of DeSantis’ major actions to address the coronavirus pandemic:
March 9, 2020: Declares State of Emergency April 1, 2020: Declares Lockdown April 29, 2020: Moves to Lift Lockdown September 25, 2020: Lockdown Ends December 8, 2020: Attend the Trump White House Summit on Operation Warp Speed. Trump praises DeSantis: ‘Great job, Ron!’ April 2021: Vaccinates July 21, 2021: Praises Vaccines, Defends Vaccines September 21, 2021: Appoints Anti-Mandate Surgeon General November 18, 2021: Signs Ban on Vaccine Mandates January 21, 2022: refuses to say if he got a booster shot August 24, 2022: Attacks Fauci as a ‘little elf’ December 13, 2022: Calls for grand jury to investigate ‘evils’ of COVID vaccine January 17 of 2023: seeks to make mandate bans permanent
Below is a timeline of Trump’s major actions to deal with the coronavirus pandemic (a compilation of statements can be found here):
January 29, 2020: White House forms coronavirus response task force, initially led by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar January 30, 2020: Blocks travel from China February 24, 2020: Sun ·requests $1.25 billion in emergency aid. It grows to $8.3 billion in Congress. March 11, 2020: In prime-time Oval Office address, announces travel ban for non-Americans from most of Europe March 13, 2020: Declares national emergency to access $50 billion for states and territories, paves way for fast-track waivers for hospitals and doctors March 14, 2020: House passes relief bill with paid leave for certain workers, expanded food assistance and unemployment insurance benefits and tax credits for the employer. Trump signs it four days later. March 16, 2020: ’15 days to slow the spread’ plan launched March 17, 2020: Trump told a news conference that for the next 14 days, “we’re asking everyone to work from home, if possible , postpone unnecessary travel.” , and limit gatherings to no more than 10 people.” March 27, 2020: Signs $2.2 trillion emergency spending bill March 29, 2020: Trump expands stay-at-home guidance until the end of April April 4, 2020: Trump urges use of drug hydroxychloroquine to fight virus April 16, 2020: Releases guidelines to restart economy April 29, 2020: Trump administration stages Operation Warp Speed May 29, 2020: Ends US relations with World Health Organization August 5 of 2020: minimizes Covid risk to children and urges schools to reopen on August 6. 2020: He predicts a vaccine could be available before the end of the year, or “around” the Nov. 3 election. October 2, 2020: President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump test positive for Covid-19. Trump is airlifted to Walter Reed Medical Center October 5, 2020: He announces in a tweet that he will be released from the hospital that night, which he does. He tells Americans, “Don’t be afraid of Covid.” Oct. 12-Nov. 2020-02-Trump returns to the campaign trail and holds numerous rallies following his Covid diagnosis 16-Oct-2020: States must present their first plans to distribute the vaccine 3-Nov-2020: Election Day. November 9, 2020: As US passes 10 million cases, Pfizer and partner BioNTech announce results of Covid vaccine trials December 2, 2020: In an Operation Warp Speed briefing, federal officials indicate that a rapid rollout of the vaccine is imminent
Donald Trump has now attacked Ron DeSantis on numerous issues in anticipation of the Florida governor potentially announcing his 2024 presidential bid, including rights, abortion, crime and now, the Covid response.
We also briefly address the claim that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is not doing “very well” on crime. According to the state’s 2021 Uniform Crime Report released in February 2023, Florida’s crime rate fell to a 50-year low.
“Crime is down in Florida for a 50-year low, according to the 2021 Annual Uniform Crime Report released today,” the statement said. “The report covers calendar year 2021 and shows that Florida’s total crime volume dropped 8.3 percent, or 38,524 fewer reported index crimes, compared to 2020.”
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis won re-election in the state of Florida with nearly 20% of the vote. Donald Trump is currently crushing potential 2024 candidate Ron DeSantis in the polls. A Harris/Harvard poll conducted April 18-19 showed Trump leading DeSantis by 35 points among Republican voters in a hypothetical Republican presidential primary.
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OPINION: This article contains comments that reflect the opinion of the author.