Some people (including a commentator on this blog!) have said it’s unfair to suggest DeSantis’s “monkey” comment was an intentional (or unintentional) racist dog whistle. That’s his campaign’s line too.
DeSantis’s personal history is suggestive here. So you be the judge:
Ron DeSantis, the Trump-endorsed congressman who won Tuesday’s GOP primary for Florida governor, is an administrator on an active Facebook group where conservatives share racist, conspiratorial and incendiary posts about a litany of targets, including black Americans and South Africans, the “deep state,” survivors of February’s massacre at a Florida high school, immigrants, Muslims and, in recent days, John McCain.
The Facebook group, simply named Tea Party, has nearly 95,000 members, and users must join the group to post or comment. The banner for the group is an image of the Confederate, Christian and Gadsden flags flying alongside the flags of the U.S. and Israel. (It isn’t affiliated with the conservative group Tea Party Patriots.)
I’d say that at the very very least this is such a radical insensitivity to racism plus a bit of enabling behavior (being an admin for the group) as to count as the thing itself, especially for a person in public life.
This is far less good than the “monkey it up” comment. But still, looks like nothing more than guilt by association. I skimmed the article and was very much put off by what members of the group said. However, I didn’t see any reference to anything that DeSantis said.
On the topic of his being an administrator, he was one of 52(!) administrators, and I didn’t see any indication about how active he was. For all I know (and I don’t know), he and some of his friends started a facebook group, and his intentions in doing so were good and noble. The group behaved itself for a while. He lost track and went away. Didn’t formally resign. And the group later got out of control. It is worth mentioning that he has since resigned.
Rather than focusing on this sort of mud slinging by implication, democrats, and anyone else interested in good government and responsible administration, should be focusing on red meat (all pulled from wikipedia, so take it for what its worth):
In 2013, DeSantis signed a pledge sponsored by Americans for Prosperity promising to vote against any global warming legislation that would raise taxes.
DeSantis opposes abortion and has denounced Planned Parenthood.
DeSantis opposed President Obama’s plan to shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, saying “Bringing hardened terrorists to the U.S. homeland harms our national security.”
DeSantis opposed the Iran nuclear deal framework,
In 2013, DeSantis introduced the Palestinian Accountability Act, which would halt U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority until it formally recognizes Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state
DeSantis supported the move of the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
DeSantis opposes gun control. He received an A+ rating from the National Rifle Association. He is generally opposed to firearm regulation, saying, “Very rarely do firearms restrictions affect criminals. They really only affect law-abiding citizens.”
DeSantis is opposed to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. He has called for the “full and complete repeal” of the act.
DeSantis was a critic of President Obama’s immigration policies; he opposed Obama’s deferred action programs (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA))
DeSantis has a “0” rating from the Human Rights Campaign based on his record of voting on LGBT-related issues and legislation.
Lots of that stuff doesn’t especially translate to the role of the governor, but it does speak to his actual record (and not the record of others). This is enough for me not to vote for him.
Lots of people have friends and uncles and cousins and coworkers that they like and respect and who also say dumb shit from time to time – this is especially true in Florida. If you attack a candidate for who he knows, the average voter will also feel attacked for who he knows. And that voter will gravitate defensively to the attacked candidate. Don’t do it. Stick to the issues and what the candidate has objectively said and done.
Good advice generally. But for week one of the campaign, framing his as ‘as Trumpy as Trump’ is good politics, and apparently accurate.
There was nothing in that article that had anything to do with DeSantes, other than saying he belonged to that group for a time.
The Gadsden flag was the first flag used by the United States Marine Corps. So that article could also be evidence that the Marines were formed as a racist group. Pretty much the same evidence is presented.
C’mon, Michael, you are better than this. Don’t let the stupid infect you so readily.