Former Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake negatively compared the Covid record of Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to that of Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom during an appearance on the PBD podcast released Tuesday.
Lake told host Patrick Bet-David that DeSantis “took a page out of Gavin Newsom’s playbook” by closing Florida beaches at the beginning of the pandemic and forcing interventions like vaccines and face masks for children.
“Let us not forget that DeSantis also shut the beaches down. DeSantis took a page out of Gavin Newsom’s playbook,” Lake said. “Despite what he says he shut the beaches down. He did force vaccines. He did force face masks on our kids. So he tries to act like he was perfect and Florida …”
When Bet-David pushed back with a question about whether DeSantis actually “forced vaccines on kids?” Lake doubled down.
“He forced vaccines on people, on workers. He forced facemasks on children,” she said. And he was for all that, DeSantis was for all of that. So he thinks that we’ve forgot that as well.”
The failed Republican candidate, who, like Trump, alleged fraud in her election loss but failed to prove it in court, went on to insist that the duration of DeSantis’ Covid interventions was “a little more” than the few weeks the host noted it lasted.
Lake, of course, had an entirely different take on DeSantis in 2022.
However, as the Florida governor emerged as a potential challenger to Trump, her approach shifted to lies and misinformation, even going so far as to allege that DeSantis was endorsed by leftist billionaire George Soros.
Kari Lake is sharing fake news about Governor Ron DeSantis despite him coming to Arizona and doing a campaign rally for her
Soros did NOT endorse DeSantis – he said dumb things about Trump and Ron and predicted Ron wins the primary pic.twitter.com/bAvFcRVMAJ
— Brendon Leslie (@BrendonLeslie) February 17, 2023
Lake’s latest contentions are also lies and mischaracterizations. This piece by Townhall’s Rebecca Downs documents the Covid debate between Trump and DeSantis, particularly DeSantis’ admission that, while he allowed for local control and followed some of the Trump administration guidelines “for those first few weeks,” he quickly made the data-based decision to chart his own course.
And he certainly didn’t mandate masks or vaccines. Florida was also among the first states to open schools in the fall of 2020, and has taken legislative steps to ensure things like mask and vaccine mandates won’t be legally possible during a future pandemic.
.@KariLake is mistaken.
It was Donald Trump that closed beaches, forced kids to wear masks and banned tag at recess, and was preparing for a military COVID vaccine mandate.
— Jeremy Redfern (@JeremyRedfernFL) September 26, 2023
The podcast clip went viral on Tuesday and Lake was blasted on Twitter/X by many on all sides of the conservative sphere:
This is a flat-out lie from @KariLake and she should be ashamed to say it.
When it was least popular, and often while standing alone, @RonDeSantis did the things she’s only now chirping about supporting.
He never mandated masks or vaccines. He took the heat to lead the nation… https://t.co/XBkm3dU0p5
— Bryan Griffin (@BryanDGriffin) September 26, 2023
Kari Lake Meet Donald Trump pic.twitter.com/DNjxprY5Mh
— Dave Rubin (@RubinReport) September 26, 2023
Former Miami Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez is the one who shut down Miami Beach and threatened to arrest people for not wearing masks.
Gimenez has endorsed Donald Trump and is campaigning with him.https://t.co/kDcZx7zMRP
— Chris Nelson 🇺🇸 🏝 (@ReOpenChris) September 26, 2023
.@KariLake this is an absolutely disgraceful lie, and you know it.
I live in Florida. This never happened.
You cheapen yourself more with each dumb statement like this. https://t.co/brs2wO1oQS
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) September 26, 2023
Kari Lake was a registered Democrat reporter from Phoenix who voted for Obama and Hillary, then decided to be a Republican, Trump takes a liking to her, she runs for Governor, loses, complains it was stolen. Her state GOP is now broke/bankrupt and her once reliably Red state is… https://t.co/AmJpLEEiEc
— Josh Power 🇺🇸 (@JoshPower80) September 26, 2023
Kari Lake did herself no favors turning off John McCain voters. (McCain was demonic but many were deceived in Arizona by him.) Every vote is gonna matter and there’s no reason to lie about DeSantis’ excellent leadership during Covid.
— Cernovich (@Cernovich) September 26, 2023
Kari Lake is basically Kari Loomer at this point. DeSantis didn’t mandate masks or vaccines. If anyone wants to dispute this, feel free to send quotes or legislation regarding that.
This is a VP audition for a job she’s never going to be chosen for.
Receipt in the next post. https://t.co/JTOQ12Ia3C
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) September 26, 2023
Lake later responded to controversy surrounding her words with an attempt to move on, but people weren’t buying it:
Kari Lake does a slimey, dishonest hit and run and then says… let’s just move on. pic.twitter.com/wcb7d40HBv
— Justin Hart (@justin_hart) September 26, 2023
As soon as she started taking the heat for lying, she posted this telling us it’s time to move on from Covid.
Yeah not happening. https://t.co/e9BJmJpe9l
— Christina Pushaw 🐊 🇺🇸 (@ChristinaPushaw) September 26, 2023