Florida Republican candidate for governor Rep. Ron DeSantis swung back at the media narrative of racism surrounding his campaign Monday, comparing his treatment to a weather reporter who faked wind intensity during Hurricane Florence.
In a video posted on Twitter by Tampa Bay Times photojournalist Scott Keeler, DeSantis accused reporters of attempting to create a narrative and of holding a double standard when it comes to his Democratic opponent, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum.
— Scott Keeler (@SKeelerTimes) September 24, 2018
Pointing at a reporter offscreen, DeSantis demanded to know if the media has asked Gillum about his ties to the Council of Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group started by the Muslim Brotherhood with connections to the terrorist group Hamas. The group was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism-financing case in U.S. history and has been designated as a terrorist organization in the United Arab Emirates.
In 2016, Gillum spoke at a CAIR event in Tallahassee, delivering a “personal welcome” to the group that had come to protest legislation that sought to bar Florida state funds from going to businesses that support the anti-Semitic Boycott-Divest-Sanction (BDS) movement against Israel.
DeSantis also criticized the media for ignoring Gillum’s relationship with Dream Defenders, a radical leftist group that supports the BDS movement and has endorsed Gillum for governor. He said the media gives Gillum a “zone of protection.”
“So it’s a double standard; it’s an attempt to create a narrative, and if I have a crowd with 500 people, how the hell am I supposed to know who’s in the crowd?” DeSantis asked.
The mainstream media has consistently endeavored to portray DeSantis and his associates as racists from day one, after he won the Republican primary for governor and used the phrase “monkey this up” to describe how Gillum’s socialist policies would destroy the Florida economy. The media has also attacked DeSantis for speaking at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, smearing Horowitz as a racist and pointing to the leftist Southern Poverty Law Center’s designation of the organization as a “hate group” as evidence of DeSantis’ own racism. Prominent black conservatives Larry Elder, Sheriff David Clarke, Allen West, K. Carl Smith, Sonnie Johnson, and many others have also delivered remarks at Freedom Center events. Additionally, DeSantis is under fire because a donor to his campaign used the N-word on Twitter once.
DeSantis slammed the media for attacking him by finding individuals tangential to his campaign and using them to smear him as a racist.
“You do not do that with Democrats. You do not look to find the most radical person in the Democrat audience,” DeSantis said. “I’d like you to start doing that, because I’ll tell you, it’s not very difficult. I can find anti-Semites around him; I can find him doing things, but it’s almost like, ‘We don’t want to discuss that.'”
The latest polls show Gillum maintaining a slight four-point lead over DeSantis after consistently polling ahead of DeSantis since the Florida primaries.
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Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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