Liberal Media Keeps Missing Targeted Swings At DeSantis. Will One Ever Hit?

(Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

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Establishment media found a new enemy since former President Donald Trump left office – Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. But the never-ending attacks never seem to find permanent standing.

When Rebekah Jones came forward and made now-debunked claims that the DeSantis administration was altering COVID-19 data, the media propped her up as a hero. Jones was a frequent guest on Joy Reid’s MSNBC show and CNN, including an exclusive interview with Chris Cuomo. A Cosmopolitan profile on Jones claimed that her “freedom was on the line;” and The Huffington Post wrote an article about how Jones promised to “speak truth to power.”

But fact checks and analysis later proved that there were no significant issues in Florida’s COVID data. It was later revealed that Jones had been fired for multiple issues at her job, including disrupting operations in her department and leaking confidential data, according to a New York Post report from Charles C.W. Cooke. (RELATED: Ron DeSantis Signs Bill Scrapping All Of Florida’s Covid Restrictions)

Many outlets also attacked DeSantis for lifting COVID-19 restrictions in Florida. ABC News cited multiple officials in the state who criticized the governor’s move and wrote that “the virus still poses a threat.” The Los Angeles Times wrote that DeSantis’ handling of the pandemic was a “failure. The Washington Post ran an article calling DeSantis’ pandemic response a “catastrophe.”

Other reports, even in some liberal outlets, were forced to admit that DeSantis’ approach was overall a success. CNN wrote that “DeSantis’ gamble to take a laissez-faire approach appears to be paying off,” citing statistics that showed Florida’s rate of COVID-19 cases and deaths was roughly the same as the national average despite having far fewer restrictions. The Associated Press ran an article about Florida and California faring very similarly in terms of cases and deaths, despite having polar opposite approaches. Politico put it bluntly, with an article titled “How Ron DeSantis won the pandemic.”

DeSantis was also vilified for his response to the devastating Surfside condo collapse. Washington Post reporter Hannah Dreier said on Twitter that DeSantis waited a full day before deploying emergency relief.

DeSantis’ press secretary Christina Pushaw responded to Dreier’s claims and said that the post was “missing context” and said that “emergency response started within minutes of the disaster.”

The governor was also blamed for an “attack” on a Florida pride parade that turned out to be a tragic accident. The Hill, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel and Raw Story all repeated Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis’ false claims that the accident was an “act of terror,” and #DeathSantis trended on Twitter. Freelance journalist Lesley Abravanel called the incident “Charlottesville part 2” and “domestic terrorism made legal by bigot” DeSantis.