Gov. Ron DeSantis slammed Democrats trying to “smear” him after alleged antisemitic demonstrations took place in Orlando, Florida, over the weekend.
“What I’m going to say is, these people, these Democrats, who are trying to use this as some type of political issue to try to smear me as if I had something to do with it, we’re not playing their game,” DeSantis told reporters at an Everglades restoration event on Monday.
DeSantis condemned Democrats for trying to tie him to the demonstrations.
“I’m not gonna have people try to smear me that belong to a political party that has elevated antisemites, like Ilhan Omar, that have played footsie with the BDS movement,” the governor added.
Videos circulating on social media showed individuals waving swastika flags while shouting antisemitic slogans at an overpass.
DeSantis denounced the demonstrators as “jacka**es” and said state law enforcement would hold them accountable.
Critics came for DeSantis following a now-deleted tweet from his Press Secretary Christina Pushaw where she claimed she was waiting for law enforcement to investigate and announce their conclusions before assuming they were “Nazis.”
However, Pushaw later reaffirmed in a tweet that DeSantis “has ALWAYS condemned antisemitic attacks & hatred, and he always will.”
Pushaw claimed those calling on DeSantis to condemn the demonstrations are not coming from a place of good faith and maintained that it’s a “dirty political smear attempt.”
The governor further reaffirmed Florida’s strong relationship with Israel and his administration’s actions against antisemitism, including signing the “strongest antisemitism bill in the country.”