MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski said Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) intentionally slurred his opponent, Andrew Gillum, as a “monkey” during a Fox News appearance.
The “Morning Joe” co-host said the Republican candidate for Florida governor clearly intended to use racist language to denigrate Gillum, who would become the state’s first black governor.
“Listen to him ramping up to get to that statement he clearly practiced in his mind,” Brzezinski said.
DeSantis hit several points in the statement that have been perceived as racist, and Brzezinski believes that was his intention going into the interview.
“You know, he is an articulate spokesman for those far-left views and he’s a charismatic candidate,” “DeSantis told Fox News. “I watched the Democrat debates, and none of it was my cup of tea, but he performed better than the other people there.”
“We’ve got to work hard to make sure that we continue Florida going in a good direction, let’s build off the success of Gov. (Rick) Scott,” he added. “The last thing we need to do is to monkey this up by trying to embrace a socialist agenda.”
Brzezinski said the Trump-endorsed lawmaker’s comments were obviously and intentionally racist.
“Somebody was playing that on their phone, that soundbite, in my home, and I stopped in my tracks,” she said. “I heard it right away, and I didn’t hear it it any other way than the way I heard it — which was racist, planned, prepared and really ugly.”