Portrait of Ron DeSantis

DeSantis Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Ron DeSantis on Special Report with Bret Baier

August 01, 2023

"I'm not running to be president, I'm running to do things as president and now is the time the country needs help."

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Ron DeSantis joined Special Report with Bret Baier on Fox News Channel. Read the highlights below.

Watch the full interview HERE.

On his Declaration of Economic Independence:

I think it's important point out nationally, whatever you say about the "strength," a lot of that is driven by Florida and Texas and the red states, let's just be honest. We have way more people employed in Florida than we did prior to COVID. That's not true with a lot of the blue states. So Biden would hype all these job gains over the last couple of years, [but] Florida, Texas, and a handful of states are really driving it. I think we've been able to push back effectively. But even if inflation "is less," those prices are not going down. So you have a situation now where [for] a middle-class family, affording a home is prohibitive. If you look at the median income compared to the median home price, there's a bigger gap than there was when the financial crisis hit after the big housing increase in 2006 and 2007. Cars are becoming less affordable, people feel that squeeze. And it's because Biden [is] more interested in pursuing his ideological agenda through the economy. And when he's attacking American energy, that is not good for the average person. It's not good for businesses. It's not good for national security. But they care more about that agenda than they do about the well-being of middle-class families. And so that's not changing. That's going to be the case. And I think I also ultimately, I have a good record to be able to say, 'whose economy has led the way over these past many years?' And Florida has led the way.

On the false narrative about Florida's African American education standards:

Kamala Harris got on a jet, at taxpayer expense, and flew to Florida to lie about the African American history standards that were developed. You can't bend the knee to the Left's lies. When the Left lies and creates these phony narratives, you've got to push it back. They've been doing this to Republicans for years and years, [and] Republicans bend the knee. And it's just one thing after another. Second, this goes into the whole fight on indoctrination in schools. We eliminated critical race theory a couple of years ago. When we did that, the media lied and the left lied, saying you don't want to teach about African American history, equating political activism and CRT with black history. I said no, not only in the bill it says that, but you've got to do all these things, teach about injustice, teach about discrimination. So these standards were born out of the fight against CRT because this is true history. It was done. And by the way, we're one of 13 or 14 states that even have African American history standards. So it was done by black history scholars, the head was the former chairman of the US Commission on Civil Rights, most of them were black. If you read those standards, there is no way you can come away from that with anything other than this is the gory details.

On standing up to China:

We're going to have a strategy of denial so that China is not going to be able to pull the trigger on that, given the amount of hard power that's in the region, given the levers we can pull on the economy. But that's kind of the main crux of our strategy to be able to deny that, I think Taiwan is an ally. I think that Taiwan is of significance to our country, of course, both militarily, diplomatically, and economically, and our goal should be to stop — China respects hard power. If they think the costs are going to exceed any potential benefits, they are not going to do it. I do think under Biden, we're on a course where in the next five or 10 years, they probably would be able to take it. If we change course, I think we could prevent it.

On how he kept Florida free during COVID lockdowns:

I fought his [Trump's] administration to keep our state open [and] have kids in school. Fauci, the task force, all those people. They were sending me missives, and the press in Florida was having a field day with this because they'd send me missives to my office. July of 2020, close businesses, no schools. Fall of 2020, close businesses, impose a mask mandate. Even January of 2021, right before he left office, his task force was telling us in Florida to close, and so he didn't have control over his own government. He didn't have control over Fauci. Fauci ran that government. His last year in office, Trump should have fired him. He did not do that. He elevated Fauci and he made Fauci an international celebrity, and here's the thing. I fought back against it. And you know all the flack that I got from the media during that and people fled to Florida because we were free, and I was happy to make that stand. But the reality is Fauci's policies were adopted in a lot of the blue states. Kids were locked out of school for a year, you had businesses shuttered for good. Knowing what we know now, that was a catastrophic mistake, and we cannot let that happen to America again.

On bringing energy to the executive:

I do think we need an energetic executive as President. We need somebody that's going to get in there on day one, and spit nails and not look back. You only have a finite period of time to get things done in two terms, eight years. But as you know, the way the political cycle works, there are times when the iron is hot, when you first get in, maybe you get reelected, you got to be able to capitalize on all of this. And so with me, they will get somebody in there who's going to run ragged. We're going to have the media, they're not going to be able to keep up with us. The left isn't going to be able to keep up with us. And also during the campaign, I am not going to let Biden get away with being in the basement for the campaign. We're gonna run him ragged around this country. And we're going to show a huge contrast with energy and vitality versus somebody who really is not fit to do the job.

Ron DeSantis, DeSantis Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Ron DeSantis on Special Report with Bret Baier Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/364169

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