DeSantis' office says governor accompanying wife to cancer treatment not 'missing' amid COVID surge
DeSantis, who is seeking reelection this year and is considered a top, potential 2024 presidential candidate, has been accused before of failing to address pandemic
The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook
Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis was reportedly accompanying his wife to her cancer treatment while critics were at the same time accusing him of instead being on vacation amid the state's spike in coronavirus cases.
A DeSantis spokesperson said the governor was accompanying wife Casey to treatment Wednesday, the day several liberal critics accused the governor of "missing," according to Fox News.
DeSantis announced in October that his wife had been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Orange County Democratic Mayor Jerry Demings on Tuesday publicly criticized DeSantis amid the rising COVID cases, saying Florida residents "should be outraged" with him not being not speaking with the news media during the virus surge.
New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez accused him of being "inexplicably missing” and asked "Hasn’t Gov. DeSantis been inexplicably missing for like 2 weeks," Fox News also reports.
She also suggested his social media team had for weeks been posting old photos.
DeSantis, who is seeking reelection this year and is considered a top-tier, potential 2024 presidential candidate, has been accused before of failing to adequately address the pandemic.
However, the state's virus numbers – including those on infection and hospitalization – have been relatively similar to those in other states while DeSantis has attempted to keep businesses open as much as possible during the pandemic and opposes mask and vaccine mandates.
The liberal media also is attacking him amid the recent surge, fueled by the virus’ highly contagious omicron variant.
MSNBC host Joy Reid tweeted he was "sunning his belly on vacation," instead of talking on-camera about the surge.
Two DeSantis spokespeople are quoted in the Fox News story, but it's unclear which one, or whether somebody else, made the statement to the news outlet about the governor's whereabouts.
DeSantis press secretary Christina Pushaw responded to Reid's tweet with a post that included DeSantis' daily schedule, and asked, "Have you ever considered that you’re one of the reasons nobody trusts the media?"
DeSantis communications staffer Kyle Lamb tweeted: "Just FYI, [DeSantis] is not on vacation. Literally no one from our office has said that he is.
"Anyone pushing that could have easily seen the public schedule and seen that he's taking calls and meetings this past week. Not having public events does not = 'vacation.' "
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