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Democratic foe nails Ron DeSantis for the lie that Lee County 'wasn't even in the cone' of Hurricane Ian's path
Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) spoke to the press while in Arcadia, Florida on Sunday and claimed that Hurricane Ian wasn't aimed at Ft. Meyers when they were doing evacuations and that they assumed it was going to hit Tampa.
"Well, was your industry stationed when the storm hit? Was it in Lee County? No, you were in Tampa. So, they were following the weather track and they had to make decisions based on that. But, you know, 72 hours they weren't even in the cone. At 48 hours they were on the periphery. So, you've got to make decisions the best you can," said DeSantis, making it seem as if the media was what influenced his decisions for evacuations.
Ali Velshi with MSNBC was stationed in Naples, Florida, which is actually about 44 miles south of Ft. Meyers and over 160 miles south of Tampa.
Florida Attorney General candidate Daniel Uhlfelder has spent the weekend sounding the alarm against these comments, saying that it was well-known where the storm was headed and well in advance. He told Raw Story on Sunday that he thinks DeSantis was too distracted to better prepare for the storm.
Uhlfelder posted a screen capture of the Lee County government's Twitter account showing mandatory evacuations for areas near the canals and on the coast. He explained that Ft. Meyers is a low-lying city and ahead of the storm they were predicting anywhere from 9-12 foot storm surges, which would reasonably swallow one-story homes across the area.
The storm hit on Sept. 28, so the Ft. Meyers area had less than 24 hours to make it to safety. The reason for this is apparently due to the media and the scientists predicting storms.
Lee County Sheriff told the press that everyone wanted to focus on how things should have been done differently but that he stands with his local officials.
"There are indications that lee county's comprehensive emergency management plan was ignored. Lee County did not issue evacuation —" Boris Sanchez asked before being cut off.
"I'm going to cut you off before you go any further. I don't know who you are or where you come from," said Sheriff Carmine Marceno. "Everyone wants to focus on a plan that might have been done differently. I'm going to tell you, I stand 100% with my county commissioners, and my county managers. We did what we had to do at the exact same time. I wouldn't have changed anything. And I know being in those meetings from the very minute. This storm was very unpredictable."
He said that he called the sheriff in Tampa to say that he would send help when he saw the projected path was set for the area.
The Hillsborough sheriff called him back, he said, and said, "look what we're talking about, that storm is coming your way. We weren't even in the projected path or cone," Marceno claimed falsely.
The Category 4 storm was always predicted to hit Lee County according to the European models. And the U.S. models always included Ft. Meyers in the cone of the storm, according to the charts published on Sunday, Sept. 28. Even if the storm headed north of Ft. Meyers, Uhlfelder explained it would have been close enough. The cities are not that far away and satellite videos as well as the weather radar showed the storm to be massive.
Uhlfelder told Raw Story that Lee County has a lot of elderly people so it's essential to give accurate warnings at least 72 hours in advance.
"There are a lot of elderly folks who need extra time to get out and to just play games — I just can't believe it," he lamented. "It's not CNN's job. CNN can't issue evacuation orders. Since when does he give any credit to the media? Now saying he did what the media says? It's a Trumpian thing to never admit you're wrong. It's just the way they do things now."
"He was telling CNN, 'What should I do? Drag people out of their house?' No! And to try and misdirect it to the media where they were, I mean, it's just irresponsible," Uhlfelder continued, noting DeSantis' had a lack of credibility.
He went on to say that all of the surrounding counties were evacuating while Lee County wasn't.
"Lee County is right there," Uhlfelder explained. "This was a huge storm. To suggest that somehow Ft. Meyers was out of the woods because he thought it was going to Tampa is not accurate. And Tampa and all of these other areas evacuated. It's a tragic situation."
He continued saying that he thinks DeSantis is distracted by his presidential ambitions over doing his job to protect the people of Florida. Uhlfelder cited former governors Rick Scott and Jeb Bush, both of whom had several hurricanes in their tenure. It's unclear if the ultimate death toll will eclipse any of the previous hurricanes.
Even as early as Saturday, Sept. 24, local Florida, ABC affiliate WWSB out of Sarasota, Florida was putting Lee County in the cone.
Watch the CNN interview with DeSantis below:
Ron DeSantis blames media for hurricane deaths youtu.be
'Hundreds of bodies': Lee County man says the sheriff is finding many dead Floridians after late evacuations
On Sunday, a Lee County man was working on clearing debris from his home when CNN's Jim Acosta approached him to ask how they fared through Hurricane Ian.
The man showed Acosta the damage to the home, the most significant parts were at the back of the home because the house is on a canal.
But it was the comments that the man made about deaths in the area that was the most shocking.
"Four doors down, their son's best friend is a Lee County sheriff, and they're finding hundreds of bodies now," the man told CNN. Acosta noted it's the same information that they are hearing too. "It is not like 20s. It is hundreds of bodies that they're getting in and looking."
Thus far, the death toll is 74 people and Acosta noted that the numbers are expected to increase dramatically. CNN also asked the Lee County Sheriff at a briefing about the death count and they dismissed the accusations that the evacuations of Ft. Meyers and Lee County didn't happen soon enough.
See the video below:
Death toll in florida www.youtube.com
During an appearance on MSNBC's "The Sunday Show," conservative campaign consultant Tara Setmayer predicted that, should the Republican Party reclaim the House in November, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) would not replace Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as the House Speaker.
In a panel discussion with host Jonathan Capehart, Setmayer claimed that Donald Trump is waiting for his chance to "humiliate" the California Republican who has been pledging his "fealty" to the twice-impeached former president.
"Is there a chance McCarthy could become speaker, but without any real power within the party," host Capehart asked.
"I mean, he could. We could apply that to a lot of things. I could become the Speaker of the House. My cat Tiki could become Speaker of the House," she replied with a smirk. "Look, I stand by my statements a year ago that Kevin McCarthy will never be Speaker of the House."
"I shocked you when I said it could be Speaker Jim Jordan (R-OH) for all we know," she continued. "But here's the thing: Kevin McCarthy thinks that he is navigating this and that he has been like so brilliant, this brilliant tactician navigating the MAGA waters since he been on this quest to become speaker. It's a doomed quest. Donald Trump cannot wait to humiliate Kevin McCarthy even further."
"We've seen this," she added. "He gets off on the idea of Kevin McCarthy's fealty. When McCarthy went on the floor of the House like [Mitch] McConnell did after January six, they actually spoke the truth about how they felt but what was going on. They had a chance to off-ramp from Trump, and when everyone thought maybe this is it, what did he do? Two weeks later, he goes down to Mar-a-Lago and he gives them some dollar store trophy and smiles next to him and he thinks this is going to work. It is not."
Watch below or at the link:
MSNBC 10 02 2022 11 40 01 youtu.be