Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to do his thing even in the midst of the media’s continued whining about supposedly unfair treatment and as his critics on the left and in the press continue to manufacture “controversies” and “scandals” that end up going absolutely nowhere.
Case in point: Last week as DeSantis was announcing $1,000 bonuses for Florida first responders for their hard work during the coronavirus pandemic, the popular Republican governor was asked about the anti-rioting/pro-police bill he signed into law last month that, among other things allows for local governments to be sued if they tell law enforcement to stand down, which enables rioters. It also increases penalties for radical “protesters.”
During the presser, DeSantis explained exactly why the legislation was necessary and tied the increase in violence in Democrat-led cities like Minneapolis, MN, and Portland, OR to the combination of efforts in those places to both defund the police and pretend that rioters who were targeting federal buildings and maiming police officers were merely exercising their First Amendment rights.
That should never happen anywhere, he said in so many words, but especially in Florida where he has all but put up an actual sign that warns radical Antifa/BLM leftists to stay out. In fact, that’s exactly what he told them in his answer to the reporter:
“There’s a lot of places around this country that have not stood by law enforcement, and the tragedy of it is, you’re seeing crime spike in certain parts of our country like we haven’t seen in decades,” he explained. “The people that are going to be most affected by that are the most vulnerable members of our society.”
“One of the reasons we are here today with the bonuses is because we know just how important that is. It tells people, ‘Hey, if you are in Portland and you think you can come down to Florida and do this, stay out of our state!’ We don’t want you coming down here and causing problems.”
Considering how even Democrats pointed out last year how the “defund the police” message from the Squad hurt vulnerable House members and caused the Democrat majority in the House to shrink considerably, DeSantis’ message pointing out the importance of supporting police as rioters are ramping up their efforts should be one that every single Republican across the country who wants to stay in office or win a seat in office touts – and means.
Polling has consistently shown that it’s not just white people who support police presence in local neighborhoods, but black people, Hispanics, and Asian-Americans. Though minority communities are more distrustful of the police, that hasn’t translated into a groundswell of support for completely defunding them or decreasing their funding.
This issue is one of the key issues that brought more Hispanic and black voters into the GOP fold in last year’s elections. Rather than run away from this issue because they worry they’ll be painted as racists, more Republican leaders should follow DeSantis’ lead on this front and not look back. And not just because it’s good politics, but also because it’s a message that makes sense in a sea of messages coming from Democrats that are not just insane but dangerous.