Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (right) and Donald Trump, both declared candidates in the 2024 presidential election, slam each other on how each handled the COVID-19 pandemic.
Although most critics of Trump’s actions during the pandemic have accused him of undermining public health guidance, downplaying the severity of the disease and promoting a litany of unverified treatments, DeSantis asserted during a podcast appearance Thursday. that Trump had actually delegated too much power to Dr. Anthony Fauci, then director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, during the pandemic.
“I think he did very well for three years, but when he handed the country over to Fauci in March of 2020, it destroyed the lives of millions of people,” DeSantis said of Trump on “The Glenn Beck Program,” a day after announcing your candidacy. . “And in Florida, we were one of the few who stood up, cut against the grain, took fire from the media, the bureaucracy, the left, even many Republicans, opened schools and kept businesses.”
Actually, Florida had the third-highest number of COVID-related deaths in 2021, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In terms of deaths per capita, Florida ranked 18th among states that year. Overall, blue states had the lowest death rates, while red states had the highest, the data shows.
Trump also repeatedly ignored and undermined Fauci’s guidance on the pandemic and vehemently criticized him when the doctor’s comments on the health crisis deviated from Trump’s vision for reopening the economy.
in a campaign video On Thursday, Trump delivered his own jab at DeSantis, saying he was the one who mishandled the COVID-19 response.
“When the facts of Ron ‘DeSanctimonious’ come out, you will see that he is better than most Democratic governors but very average, at best, compared to the Republican governors, who have done a fantastic job.” Trump said in a campaign video.
“Even [former New York Gov. Andrew] Cuomo did better,” Trump launched into DeSantis, referencing the deaths from COVID-19 in each state. “He closed everything, including the beaches.”
From a public health perspective, neither Trump nor DeSantis did a good job protecting people during the COVID-19 pandemic, and both put many people at risk for political gain, critics and experts say. infectious diseases.
DeSantis again criticized Trump during an appearance on “The Ben Shapiro Show” on Friday.
“He answered [to the pandemic] elevating Anthony Fauci and really handing the reins over to Dr. Fauci, and I think with dire consequences for the United States.”
DeSantis claimed that he would have ousted Fauci if he had been in Trump’s seat during the early years of the pandemic.
“If I am president, someone like Fauci is in government, I will bring them in and I will tell them two things. You’re fired,” the Florida governor said, despite the fact that the president would not actually have the power to directly fire someone like Fauci, who was not a political appointee.
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