The Associated Press Has Quietly Come Around on a Drug It Once Used to Scorch Ron DeSantis

The Associated Press Has Quietly Come Around on a Drug It Once Used to Scorch Ron DeSantis
AP Photo/LM Otero

Seems the Associated Press would have reported on this development after it took a hardline against its promotion.

There seems to be a side-effect emerging from the new outbreak of the Omicron variant this winter. You may have experienced dizziness, confusion, or bouts of speechlessness – not from this COVID strain, but from the radical 180-degree shift experienced in the press. Suddenly, we see journalists saying things that mere months ago were grounds for de-platforming, or possibly being rounded up and placed in state custody, like a Down Under lock up.

Seemingly overnight – and barely a week since Twitter forbade such discourse – members of the press were freely commenting how people who were double-vaxxed and even boosted could contract COVID. Then we saw Brian Stelter, of all people, come out and push for kids to go back to school by saying things such as, “Shouldn’t we be doing more to protect children by letting them live normal lives? Or, to pose the Q another way, are we really going to close schools again and let kids suffer even more?” Ron DeSantis was basically called a child-killer last summer when he said the very same type of things.

And on the subject of Florida’s governor, the Associated Press had a curious report about the Omicron surge. In detailing what may lie ahead, the news syndicate indicated how the new strain could render some existing treatments as ineffective in battling the virus. Omicron may sideline two leading drugs against COVID-19, touts the headline. That word “leading” is what jumps out here, considering the drugs being covered. Next, there is this quote.

For more than a year antibody drugs from Regeneron and Eli Lilly have been the go-to treatments for early COVID-19, thanks to their ability to head off severe disease and keep patients out of the hospital.

This…is a deeply curious development. Because four months ago, this same news outlet had taken Governor Ron DeSantis to task for his promoting Regeneron as a treatment for those who contract COVID. That article suggested the main reason he was pushing so hard for it was that a hedge fund with heavy investments in the drugmaker was a campaign donor. The wheels came off of this report in short order.

The deep flaws in the reporting were that Citadel, the investors mentioned, had a small stake in Regeneron through an investment fund of numerous holdings. Also, as the AP implied DeSantis was steering people away from vaccines to get this treatment, the company owned far more shares of both Pfizer and Moderna. Then there was the small matter that the dosages had already been purchased by the federal government the year prior, so there was no profit benefit to be realized.

Oh wait — I said the federal government there, didn’t I? Yea, you see, the Regeneron treatment was not some new mystical discovery by the Florida governor; it was long recognized as a viable way of addressing COVID symptoms. In fact, Joe Biden, and a host of journalists had been promoting the virtues of Regeneron all around the same time as this report. It was clear that the article either was written with the barest of research behind it, or it elided many details in order to paint the governor as semi-corrupt; neither looks good on the Associated Press.

Moderna, Coronavirus Vaccine
AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

In the wake of that report, a feud of words developed between the news syndicate and the governor’s office, with DeSantis press secretary Christina Pushaw being accused of attacking their reporter. Even as the AP went back and made minor corrections to its story, it never did address the underlying problems. I asked Pushaw if the AP ever spoke to her again or made the necessary changes. “No, they doubled down and still to this day refuse to correct their headline, which falsely implies a conflict of interest where none ever existed.” 

Now comes this latest article and the AP is essentially proving that past article as blatantly incorrect. Not only is it recognizing Regeneron as an important option for COVID-positive patients (the AP now refers to it as a “go-to treatment”), but the tell is that it states that the use of this has been well known for over a year. The dust-up with DeSantis was just months ago, this past August. 

This means they managed to defy their own reporting and their own directives on pandemic coverage. So how did an Associated Press writer bypass what their own employer is recognizing as a long-used effective treatment? By following the media narrative and not following what the media tells everyone else to follow – the science.

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