Florida’s Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis unloaded on the “corporate media” after a “60 Minutes” hit job went awry.
During an appearance in Panama City on Tuesday, DeSantis denounced the “smear merchants” whose rank partisanship has cost them the trust of half the country.
In his comments, DeSantis said, “They (“60 Minutes”) cut out everything that showed their narrative was a piece of horse manure. It shows you how dishonest – these are smear merchants – that’s why nobody trusts corporate media. They are a disaster in what they’re doing.”
DeSantis was referring to a highly edited segment on Sunday that suggested he received a $100,000 campaign kickback after Publix Super Markets was cleared to administer vaccines.
The state’s emergency management director and the county mayor in Palm Beach County, both Democrats, have defended DeSantis and declared “60 Minutes” was flat-out wrong and misleading viewers.
“They knew what they were doing was a lie. I knew what they were doing was a lie. Everybody here knows what they were doing is a lie. They know that we know that they’re lying, and yet they continue to lie, and they lied and they lied and they lied,” said DeSantis.
He wasn’t done – not by a long shot.
“We offered them the information and they declined to interview the key people because they didn’t want to let go of the narrative. Well, guess what? There is going to be consequences for that.”
The governor continued, “I know corporate media thinks they can just run over people, but you ain’t running over this governor. I’m punching back, and I’m going to continue to do it until the smear merchants are held accountable.”
After calling attention to the success of Florida’s “seniors first” COVID-19 vaccination effort, DeSantis added, “It’s been a team effort – we’ve worked in a lot of different ways – but you can’t lie.”
“You should not have run it. They were warned, and yet they plowed ahead anyways, so we’re going to be doing even more to expose the lies because there are lies built upon lies on all this.”
On Tuesday, CNN liberal columnist Chris Cillizza, without defending “60 Minutes” acknowledged the snafu was a boon for the first-term governor.
“DeSantis couldn’t have written this script any better. He gets oodles more national attention and love from Trump conservatives, all the while being able to bash away at the media. Win, win, win,” wrote Cillizza.
“The Point: Becoming a major contender for a presidential nomination requires skill, yes. But it also requires being in the right place at the right time — not to mention some lucky breaks. And this is a major one for DeSantis.”
But to DeSantis’ point: Six weeks ago, Forbes noted that an annual survey of Americans’ trust in the national media by the big-dollar communications strategists at Edelman had hit an all-time low.
As examples, Edelman pointed out 56 percent believe “Journalists and reporters are purposely trying to mislead people by saying things they know are false or gross exaggerations,” and that 61 percent thought that “the media is not doing well at being objective and non-partisan.”
Other News: DeSantis Finds Democratic Defenders Who Denounce ‘Fake Narrative 60 Minutes’ Piece