Drunk on the power of his poll numbers, Florida Governor RONALD DION DeSANTIS cast asperwsions on our democratic allies in Canada and Australia at his CPAC speech, eschewing any mention of Russians invading in Ukraine, or DONALD TRUMP's empowering Russian interests there, commencing with his altering the 2016 Republican platform on Ukraine.
From The London Daily Mail:
Ron DeSantis says Florida is a 'citadel of freedom' that Biden 'hates' and tears into Canada and Australia for their 'authoritarian rule' but DOESN'T mention Trump in CPAC speech
- Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called his Sunshine State the 'citadel of freedom' that President Joe Biden 'hates'
- He also called out Canada and Australia for their 'authoritarian rule' over COVID restrictions
- DeSantis got a raucous reaction when he welcomed crowds Thursday afternoon to the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando
- The annual affair was relocated to Florida last year for being more permissive during the coronavirus pandemic
- The Republican mocked Biden's first year in office declaring that the Democrat has had the 'worst year of any president since the 1800s'
- DeSantis spoke at the same time Biden was addressing the crisis in Ukraine from the White House, creating a split-screen moment
- DeSantis didn't address the unfolding crisis in Ukraine, instead knocking Western countries for being overly restrictive about COVID
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called his Sunshine State the 'citadel of freedom' that President Joe Biden 'hates' - and called out Canada and Australia for their 'authoritarian rule' over COVID restrictions.
DeSantis got a raucous reaction when he welcomed crowds Thursday afternoon to the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando - relocated to Florida last year for being more permissive during the coronavirus pandemic.
DeSantis spoke at the same time Biden was addressing the crisis in Ukraine from the White House, creating a split-screen moment.
The Florida governor didn't touch on the unfolding Russian attack on Ukraine.
Instead he called out other Western nations for their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.
'I really believe had Florida not led the way this country could look like Canada or Australia,' DeSantis said.
'There are people that look to FLorida as the citadel of freedom, who are chafing under authoritarian rule all across the world,' he continued.
The governor then read a portion of a letter from a 'Samuel from Australia.'
Quoting Samuel, DeSantis said, '"There isn't much hope right now here, and many of us are fearful of what our leaders have in store forus. I look to you and your great state of Florida for hope during this dark time, thank you for standing up for us."'
'And we have done that - Canadians are writing in, Australia, Europe, you name it,' DeSantis said. 'And I think they understand what the stakes are and they look to us for what protecting freedoms a lot means.'
DeSantis has pushed back on the federal government's push to have workers vaccinated and for there to be masking in public schools.
'There's one fella that just hates Florida and his name is Joe Biden,' DeSantis said. 'He's always criticizing us. Always trying to take potshots at Florida.'
It's usually White House press secretary Jen Psaki calling out DeSantis, doing so a number of times from the podium.
In January she called him 'crazy' after he tried to fight a Food and Drug Administration decision to pull two COVID-19 antibody treatments that the agency deemed ineffective.
'Let's just take a step back here just to realize how crazy this is,' she told reporters, adding he was 'advocating for treatments that don't work.'
DeSantis told the crowd he took a political risk to ensure people can do what they want amid the pandemic.
'And we did it when it wasn't popular, we did it when we were taking fire. And we did it because my duty is to stand up and protect the freedoms and the jobs of the people I represent,' he said. And if that puts me in political jeopardy, so be it.'
While a pariah to Biden, DeSantis' laissez faire COVID policies were applauded during former President Donald Trump's administration - with former Vice President Mike Pence traveling to Florida several times in the spring of 2020 to tout its 'reopening.'
DeSantis didn't say much about Trump - with reports suggesting the ex-president has grumbled about the Florida governor's ascension - though he did brush up against the so-called 'big lie.'
He touted Florida's own election infrastructure in 2020 while noting that 'there were a lot of shenanigans in other parts of the country.'
Trump, who relocated to Palm Beach, Florida after leaving office, will descend to CPAC Saturday night - with the ex-president being given a primetime speaking slot.