Abrams: DeSantis was apolitical in comments, until today 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during a news conference. (Alicia Devine/Tallahassee Democrat via AP)

(NewsNation) — I am disappointed in Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Relief efforts in southwest Florida have, for the most part, been politics free, which is no small deal. Last week on this show, I praised Governor DeSantis on a number of fronts, including his not taking the political bait from Tucker Carlson, who tried to get him to make politicized comments about the hurricane.

“Given how politicized things are at the moment, are you confident you’re going to get the federal support Florida needs,” Carlson questioned.

“So I actually spoke with the president and he said he wants to be helpful. So we did submit a request for reimbursement for the next 60 days at 100%. That’s significant support, but it’s a significant storm,” DeSantis answered.

Both the president and the governor appeared to drop the partisan snipes and focus on collaborative relief efforts. And that was on display again today during a joint media event.

“One of the things that you’re seeing in this response, we are cutting through the bureaucracy. We are cutting through the red tape, and that’s from local government, state government, all the way up to the president. So we appreciate the team effort,” DeSantis said.

I saluted Governor DeSantis and President Biden for working together and questioned why we the marginalized moderate majority can’t force the opposing sides to the table more often. But unfortunately, Governor DeSantis, who is currently running for reelection in a hotly contested race, is now reverting back to trying to score political points, particularly now that questions are being asked as they often are in the wake of a natural disaster, about whether proper warnings were provided to Fort Myers in Lee County where much of the worst devastation occurred.

“I think part of it, quite frankly, you know, you have national regime media that they wanted to see Tampa, because they thought that’d be worse for Florida. That’s how these people think,” DeSantis said.

The national media wanted to see Tampa hit by the hurricane because it would do more damage? Shame on him.

Look, I am often very critical of the national media and its political bias. But there is nothing to blame them for here.

The national media didn’t just go down to Florida and offer the most accurate predictions available from the National Weather Center or others, but many also helped with relief and recovery efforts. And Governor DeSantis wasn’t done with his comments.

“They don’t care about the people of this state. They don’t care about the people of this community. They want to use storms and destruction from storms as a way to advance their agenda. And they don’t care what destruction is in their wake. They don’t care about the lives here. If they can use it to pursue their political agenda, they will do it,” DeSantis said.

Wow. No one wants storms to create destruction anywhere. And there’s nothing and I mean, nothing to back his statement up.

Many in the “regime media” as he calls it have family and friends who live in the areas hit hard. And here’s the other issue. Questions for Governor DeSantis are legitimate and real. He was asked Monday during a press event in Tampa about reports that his tour of the hurricane-ravaged Lee County interrupted rescue efforts, because his security had blocked off the area he was touring.

“Yeah, it’s just it’s a categorical lie. And the sheriff and the county said it’s a lie. I don’t know why we’re worried about the silly issues when we’ve got people to help. OK, I was the first one to show up in DeSoto and help those people. They were appreciative that we were there. We weren’t stopping anything. They had distributed a bunch of water and food and whatnot. There was nobody even in line at the time. So it’s a total lie,” DeSantis said.

Look, it may not be a fair characterization. And I’m sure people were appreciative that he was there. It was also not made up. A local ABC affiliate filed a report on it the day before.

Look, he could very well have been unaware that his security detail had stopped some rescue efforts, and I doubt it had a major impact. But the notion that the media at this disaster was playing some sort of cheap trick on him is absurd. In particular, as he suggested the national media wanted the damage to be worse? That isn’t politics. That is a lot worse.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and not of NewsNation.

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