Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis ripped into a reporter who asked him a question about his responsibility for children who had contracted the coronavirus in Florida.
DeSantis was speaking to reporters on Tuesday when he got into a heated exchange with one journalist.
“Seven kids are in Joe DiMaggio Hospital, two of them are in ICU. Don’t you think the mask would help those poor children?” the reporter asked.
“Do you have any data to suggest that? Do you know if they were wearing masks?” DeSantis fired back.
“I know they weren’t vaccinated,” she responded.
“Well, right, they’re not eligible for the vaccination,” replied DeSantis.
“So you’re blaming the kids, saying they weren’t wearing masks so they’re in the ICU. With all due respect, I find that deplorable to blame a victim who ends up being hospitalized! You don’t know their story, you don’t know what happened with that!” DeSantis continued.
“This has been a really negative thing throughout this whole thing, with some of these, quote, experts, some of the media. Somebody can contract a highly transmissible airborne virus and they’re viewed as having done something wrong. That’s just not the way you do it. When people come in, you treat them!” DeSantis added.
Prior to that exchange, DeSantis accused the media of fear mongering and causing hysteria with their inaccurate reporting.
Florida is facing a resurgence of coronavirus with nearly 17,000 new daily cases reported on Tuesday, and 140 additional deaths. Overall, nearly 40,000 people in Florida have died from the coronavirus.
DeSantis also said during the briefing that he was dedicated to keeping Florida open despite the coronavirus resurgence.
“We are not shutting down,” he said declaratively.
“We are going to have schools open,” DeSantis said. “We are protecting every Floridian’s job in this state. We are protecting people’s small businesses. These interventions have failed time and time again throughout this pandemic, not just in the United States but abroad. They have not stopped the spread, particularly with delta.”
Here’s video of the fiery exchange:
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis blames the media for hysteria and fearmongering