On Friday, Governor Ron DeSantis is scheduled to host a rally for Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, despite Mastriano’s connections to Gab and notable antisemitic extremists like Andrew Torba. Ahead of that rally, the Florida Democratic Party Jewish Caucus Board issued the following statement:
“At a time when we’re seeing a dangerous rise in antisemitism across the country, Governor Ron DeSantis is elevating the very extremists spreading this disgusting hate. Instead of tackling the very real issues Floridians are facing right now, DeSantis is vainly promoting his own political aspirations across the country – and perhaps most alarmingly, has chosen to campaign with Doug Mastriano, Republican candidate for Governor in Pennsylvania, who has a history of associating with antisemitic extremists.
“Doug Mastriano is not a normal Republican candidate for Governor – over the past several weeks, reporting has revealed that he paid the white supremacist website Gab – a website that was ‘key’ in the murders of 11 Jewish people in Pittsburgh, PA in what is the deadliest antisemitic attack in American history. Mastriano gained supporters through Gab and told its CEO, Andrew Torba, ‘Thank god for what you’ve done.’ As the Anti Defamation League and the Republican Jewish Coalition rightly pointed out, ‘Gab is a cesspool of antisemitism and racism’ and it ‘should have no place in American politics.’ By campaigning with Mastriano, DeSantis making it clear that he is willing to elevate those who traffic in hatred and antisemitism to further his own political ambitions.
“For us in Florida, this is not surprising. Ron DeSantis has actively worked to undermine our democracy, erode our fundamental freedoms, and foster the kind of extremism that makes us all less safe. But if DeSantis had any decency left, he would cancel his rally with Mastriano out of respect for the people of Florida. We stand united against antisemitism and hate, and we will work to elect leaders who will stand up for our values here in Florida, in Pennsylvania, and across the country.”