Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis pushed back after President Biden took him and other Republican governors to task for actively standing in the way of mask mandates, according to The Hill.
DeSantis addressed the president’s comments at a news conference, saying that he would stand up for Floridians’ rights and in the way of “lockdown policies” that would restrict the rights of parents and children in Florida.
“Joe Biden suggests that if you don’t do lockdown policies, then you should ‘get out of the way.’ But let me tell you this: If you’re coming after the rights of parents in Florida, I’m standing in your way. I’m not going to let you get away with it,” DeSantis said.
“If you’re trying to deny kids a proper in-person education, I’m going to stand in your way and I’m going to stand up for the kids in Florida.
“If you’re trying to restrict people, impose mandates if you’re trying to ruin their jobs and their livelihoods and their small business, if you are trying to lock people down, I am standing in your way and I’m standing for the people of Florida,” he continued.
The governor’s comments came on the heels of Biden calling out him along with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) due to their decision to sign executive directives that would ban mask mandates in public schools, among other places.
“We need leadership from everyone and if some governors aren’t willing to do the right thing to beat this pandemic, then they should allow businesses and universities who want to do the right thing to be able to do it,” Biden said at the White House on Tuesday afternoon.
The Florida governor and rumored potential 2024 presidential candidate advised the president to focus on immigration and the southern border if he wanted a project that would slow down the spread of COVID-19:
“Why don’t you do your job, why don’t you get this border secure and until you do that, I don’t want to hear a blip about COVID from you,” DeSantis said.