DeSantis silence on antisemitism continues an unacceptable pattern for the Governor on the issue

Why is Governor DeSantis so silent on anti-Semitic discrimination? Despite meek statements he’s not calling out the clear pattern of discrimination being seen in Florida. (Edited – we don’t consider the Governor talking about his record while avoiding the topic at hand actually addressing it)

After a number of antisemitic displays and demonstrations cropped up across Florida over the weekend, most notably in Jacksonville outside a college football game between the University of Florida and the University of Georgia, a wide range of organizations and public figures forcefully condemned the hateful messages.

Days later, Ron DeSantis has still refused to do so – despite the fact that he actually attended the game to perform the coin toss. He even posted a campaign-style highlight video of his appearance to social media, while making no mention of the anti-Semitic displays that occurred just outside. Afterwards, DeSantis jetted off to New York where in a campaign appearance he attacked Geroge Soros – a Jewish Billionaire.

DeSantis, Democratic opponent former Governor Crist has made a strong statement,

“I am disgusted and horrified at the hateful, antisemitic rhetoric that was displayed in Jacksonville this weekend. Hate should have no home in Florida, period.

“But while antisemitism is spreading in our state, Governor DeSantis refuses to condemn it – even when it’s broadcast on the side of a stadium he is in. 

“It’s a disgusting and absolute failure of leadership. Today and always, I stand with our Jewish neighbors in Florida and across the nation.”

Charlie Crist, October 30, 2022

Despite urging Floridians, earlier this year on Holocaust Remembrance Day to “confront anti-Semitism,” this is not the first time that DeSantis has fallen woefully short of that bare-minimum standard. In July, after neo-Nazis literally displayed swastikas and “DeSantis Country” flags outside of a speech he gave, DeSantis said nothing.

In August, DeSantis campaigned with Pennsylvania GOP gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, who has a history of making anti-Semitic comments. DeSantis was strongly condemned by the Florida Democratic Party, with FDP Jewish Caucus President Rabbi Mark Winer calling out DeSantis for “provid[ing] such comfort – such safe harbor – to bigots and racists of every kind.”

And in September, DeSantis released an ad touting an endorsement from a pastor who has made numerous anti-Semitic comments on his Facebook page.

The Governor has had countless opportunities during this campaign season to frocefully denounce antisemitism and say he no does not welcome the support of antisemitic people and he rejects antisemitic tropes. But he has failed to do so.

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