Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to face fierce partisan attacks from leftists nationwide, including the latest allegations that he had disappeared amid an uptick in COVID-19 infections in his state.
As Fox News subsequently reported, however, the accusations against DeSantis have apparently backfired.
“All Florida residents should be outraged”
While it is true that DeSantis has not made many public appearances in recent weeks, it is not because he is running for political cover. Instead, he has reportedly been by his wife’s side as she undergoes cancer treatment.
Democratic leaders including Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings have attempted to turn the governor’s absence into a major scandal.
“Our residents, all Florida residents should be outraged, and they should ask the question: ‘Now, where’s our state? Where’s our governor?'” Demings said during a news conference on Tuesday.
The mayor went on to rhetorically ask: “When was the last time you saw the governor do a press briefing regarding COVID-19?”
Of course, the backlash was not limited to officials in his own state. U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) tweeted: “Hasn’t Gov. DeSantis been inexplicably missing for like 2 weeks?”
“Folks are quite receptive here”
Ocasio-Cortez offered her take during a recent outing to Florida, adding that she “would be happy to say hello” to the governor if he were available.
“His social media team seems to have been posting old photos for weeks,” she added. “In the meantime, perhaps I could help with local organizing. Folks are quite receptive here.”
Mainstream media figures including Joy Reid also got in on the action. The MSNBC host declared DeSantis was “sunning his belly on vacation” instead of “governing during a crisis.”
In reality, Fox News reported that the governor had been busy accompanying his wife to treatment for the breast cancer diagnosis revealed publicly in October, at which time DeSantis vowed that she will have “the support of our entire family, as well as the prayers and well wishes from Floridians across our state.”
A spokesperson confirmed that the governor made one such trip to his wife’s treatment facility on Wednesday even as many of his critics on social media declared him missing.