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FT. LAUDERDALE — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis joked about how Democrats from states with “draconian” coronavirus policies keep popping up in his state for vacation.
DeSantis was asked about this during a press conference Monday after progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., was spotted in Miami over the weekend, not wearing a mask while at a crowded drag bar.
Ocasio-Cortez was spotted in Florida with her boyfriend amid a coronavirus spike in New York City, in a photo published by National Review.
“If I had a dollar for every lockdown politician who decided to escape to Florida over the last two years, I’d be a pretty doggone wealthy man, let me tell you,” DeSantis joked. “I mean, congresspeople, mayors, governors, I mean you name it.”
“It’s interesting the reception that some of these folks will get in Florida,” the governor continued, “because I think a lot of Floridians say wait a minute you’re bashing us because we’re not doing your draconian policies, and yet we’re the first place you want to flee to, to basically to be able to enjoy life.”
Republican candidate for Governor Ron DeSantis holds a rally in Orlando, Florida, U.S., November 5, 2018. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
DeSantis specifically pointed to governors of states with strict policies who had spent time in the Sunshine State.
“There are probably about a half dozen governors who had restrictions on their people and then were spotted at various points in Florida. Some of it’s been public, some of it‘s not been public, but you know people tell me these things,” he said.
The Republican made clear that he did not begrudge them for it, taking pride in the desirability of the state he leads.
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA – MARCH 04: People walk on the beach on March 04, 2021 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. College students have begun to arrive in the South Florida area for the annual spring break ritual. City officials are anticipating a large spring break crowd as the coronavirus pandemic continues. They are advising people to wear masks if they cannot social distance. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
“I’m happy though that Florida’s a place where people know they can come and they can live like normal people, they can make their own decisions,” he said.