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The Guardians of Democracy

Florida GOP Candidate Snaps, Cuts Off Debate Moderator When Asked About Ties To Racist Group


Florida GOP Candidate Snaps, Cuts Off Debate Moderator When Asked About Ties To Racist Group

During Wednesday night’s second Florida gubernatorial debate at Broward College, moderator Todd McDermott asked former Republican Congressman Ron DeSantis, who had previously warned Fox news viewers not to “monkey this up” by electing his African-American opponent Andrew Gillum, about speeches he delivered at far-right events.

“You’ve made appearances at four of David Horowitz’s Freedom Center events,” said McDermott. “Again, four separate times, four speeches. Among some of Mr. Horowitz’s statements, quoting here, ‘This country’s only serious race war is against whites.’”

“You can play the McCarthyite game—” DeSantis interjected, visibly agitated.

“I’ll ask the questions, it’s not a McCarthy game,” said McDermott. “Wait for the question, sir. He also said, ‘If blacks are oppressed in America, why isn’t there a black exodus?’ Now, in 2015 in your speech before the Freedom Center, you said of Mr. Horowitz, ‘David has done great work, and I’ve been an admirer. I’ve been to these conferences in the past, and I’ve been a big admirer of an organization that shoots straight, tells the American people the truth, and is standing up for the right thing. Those are his words—”

“He had not even made those statements then,” DeSantis fired back before the moderator could ask his question.

“Yes he had, sir,” McDermott pushed back. “The first statement was made—”

“Well, how the hell am I supposed to know every statement that somebody makes?” DeSantis angrily shouted back to audible boos from the audience. “I am not going to bow down to the altar of political correctness. I’m not going to let the media smear me.”

Gillum took note of DeSantis’ angry answer and recounted an allegory from his childhood: “My grandmother used to say a hit dog will holler,” Gillum said. “And it hollered through this room.”

“Mr. DeSantis has spoken, first of all, he’s got neo-Nazis helping him out in this state,” Gillum said. “He has spoken at racist conferences, he’s accepted a contribution, and would not return it, from someone who referred to the former president of the United States as a Muslim ‘n—-r.'”

“When asked to return that money, he said no. He’s using that money now to fund negative ads,” Gillum added. “Now, I’m not calling Mr. DeSantis a racist, I’m simply saying the racists believe he’s a racist.”


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