Predictably, the attacks on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by Democrats and their allies in the mainstream media on his handling of the pandemic continue as panic about the Delta variant escalates and Florida’s coronavirus case numbers rise.
The latest participant in the Bash DeSantis fest is Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber, a Democrat who got a lot of fawning press attention after an interview he did on CNN over the weekend in which he likened DeSantis to “the pied piper leading everybody off a cliff right now” because of his ban on mask mandates and his advice to Floridians to go about their daily lives as best they can while taking the precautions they deemed necessary:
“We’re not allowed to have mask mandates right now,” Gelber, 60, told CNN’s Ryan Nobles in an interview over the weekend. “We were one of the first cities to require it and we charged a fine just to get people to do it and the governor stopped allowing us to do it and then immediately we saw a surge across our county and state when he did that.”
“The governor has made it as difficult as possible to make people safe,” Gelber continued, adding that even some Republican mayors are in agreement about reissuing mask mandates.
“He should be screaming for people to get vaccinated, he should be urging them to wear masks,” Gelber added. “He creates a false choice that if you wear a mask it’s going to shutter the economy. Of course that’s not true. It feels like he’s doing everything he can to make it harder.”
Gelber also wrote a letter to DeSantis, dated July 29th, in which he urged him to, among other things, “Restore to local cities the authority to impose measures to protect residents, including mask mandates”:
As you might have guessed, as is the case with other Democrats who take shots at Republicans over masking and vaccines the problem here with Gelber’s bloviating is that the day before he wrote that letter to DeSantis and a few days before he went on CNN to take a swipe at the Governor, Gelber was participating in at least one indoor photo-op where almost everyone in the room including Gelber was – you guessed it – maskless:
Today we recognized city staff and a special four legged friend who stepped up to support our neighbors in Surfside. pic.twitter.com/VrGBinNvuP
— City of Miami Beach (@MiamiBeachNews) July 28, 2021
— Dan Gelber (@MayorDanGelber) July 28, 2021
Even though DeSantis has set it so cities can’t impose mask mandates, local officials who want to encourage masking can set an example by appearing at public indoor gatherings by wearing a mask and requesting others in attendance do so as well. Did Gelber do that at this event? Obviously not.
Here’s a reminder, too, that DeSantis is not “doing everything he can to make it harder” for people to be safe, as Gelber alleged in the CNN interview. Not only has DeSantis frequently encouraged people to get the vaccine, but he also prioritized senior citizens over every one else in his state in the early days of the vaccine’s distribution and administration, something Democrats and the media bizarrely slammed him for at the time as though it should be a scandal that he was putting one of the most vulnerable groups at the head of the line.
DeSantis’ critics really do make it too easy sometimes.