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SWFL Republicans approve of DeSantis leadership during pandemic

We looked at critiques from both sides of the aisle regarding Gov. Ron DeSantis’ recent leadership in the state during the pandemic.

The governor has made three official public appearances in the last 18 days, and he has not answered questions from the press in nearly three weeks. That’s a big change from the beginning of Florida’s COVID-19 surge when he held news conferences almost daily.

Republicans say Florida’s governor is doing exactly what he should, but Democrats accuse him of ultimately hiding.

“Clearly, the governor doesn’t have the courage to stand before the people of Florida and address what is again a coronavirus pandemic,” said Attorney Gwen Graham (D), a former Florida U.S. congresswoman.

“He’s avoiding people because he doesn’t have answers,” Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried (D) said.

“You know, he doesn’t have someone in the White House telling him what to do.”

“Essentially choosing politics over people here in the Sunshine State,” State Rep. Anna Eskamani (D) said.

Doris Cortese (R), the vice chair of the Lee County Republican Club, told us it’s the Democrats who are playing politics and licking their wounds

“The democrats just lost Florida,” Cortese said. “I know Ron DeSantis. He doesn’t avoid tough questions, but he’s not going to go out to talk just to talk.”

Cortese said the governor is letting his actions speak for him.

DeSantis opened up Florida’s economy, and people went back to work.

“I kind of look at him like Trump,” Cortese said. “Our economy is coming back. It’s starting to boom. People are healthy … Kids are back in school. Things are going on that need to.”

We asked Cortese about the governor’s lack of public acknowledgment toward the increase in COVID-19 cases in Florida, along with the positivity rate.

“At this point we have a slight spike. It’s not much. It’s nowhere near what we had in July,” Cortese said. “And it may go up some more with Thanksgiving, but any flu that you have, any epidemic that you have are going to have highs and lows.”

Reporter:Morgan Rynor
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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