Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis on Tuesday declined to answer a question about his support for mainstream human rights when a reporter asked him about Republicans embracing “extreme” anti-gay politics.
“There seems to be a wave of extreme conservatism recently that is totally anti-gay, as evident in social media and even in government with people like Congresswoman [Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene],” the reporter told the Florida governor.
“Can you say here today you support more mainstream human rights, like gay marriage and sexual orientation of adults? Yes or no?” the reporter asked.
“So there’s a lot in that I don’t know where you’re necessarily going,” DeSantis, seemingly thrown by the reporter’s very basic question, replied. “Like, look, what we’ve done with the schools is, is say, you know, it’s inappropriate to be having these students exposed to curriculum about things like transgender ideology, it’s wrong for teachers to probe their sexuality, but that’s just saying what’s appropriate for, uh, for education and we want to focus on the basics. We want math, we want science who are reading, we want writing we want arithmetic we want all those things. And that’s really what all that other stuff terms of what people are saying, I don’t know. I could just tell you what we’re doing in the state of Florida.”
The governor quickly called on another reporter, but the reporter shot back, “I’m referring to adults.”
DeSantis refused to answer the reporter’s actual initial question or his follow up.
Last year, DeSantis signed into law his infamous “Don’t Say Gay” law, promising it would only be applied to students up through third grade. This year he expanded it to all grades. According to GLAAD, he falsely claimed that books were not being banned in Florida. He also falsely claimed it was a “joke” that a book on iconic baseball hero Roberto Clemente had been removed from library shelves, then pivoted by blaming unions and politics.
Asked about the growing “anti-gay” conservative sentiment, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) retreats to defending school policies:
“I don’t know where you’re necessarily going … It’s wrong for teachers to probe [students’] sexuality.”
Reporter: “I’m referring to adults, not children.” pic.twitter.com/uRr4t4MU8l
— The Recount (@therecount) May 2, 2023