New Lincoln Project ad slams GOP governors using footage of 9-year-old hospitalized due to COVID

A new ad from the conservative Lincoln Project takes aim at Republican Govs. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Greg Abbott of Texas over their opposition to school mask mandates.

The ad includes footage of a 9-year-old Florida boy hospitalized with COVID-related pneumonia that has gone viral on social media in recent days.

In a Twitter post sharing the footage last week, retired union representative Katherine MacKenzie wrote: "(H)ere's what a 9 yr old with pneumonia looks like. He spent 3 days in P-ICU 6 days in all in the hospital. If you could prevent a child from going through this just by wearing masks why the hell wouldn't you?"

MacKenzie's post has been retweeted nearly 20,000 times.

The 30-second Lincoln Project ad, titled "Back to School" and set to ominous music, begins with a young girl wearing a mask and sitting at a desk in a classroom, followed by text saying, "This is where your child should be this fall."

After cutting to the boy in the hospital, the ad reads, "This is where they could be."

"If you could prevent this, wouldn't you? Wouldn't anyone?" the text reads, showing a split screen of Abbott and DeSantis.

"These governors have let the will of Donald Trump's reckless base dictate their COVID-19 policies — or lack thereof," the Lincoln Project said in a news release unveiling the ad. "First, DeSantis and Abbott put their elderly population in jeopardy by refusing to encourage mask wearing or social distancing. Now, as school begins, they have let their political interests get in the way of protecting children."

Lincoln Project co-founder Reed Galen said: "GOP governors across the country, like DeSantis and Abbott, are letting their political ambition guide their response to the coronavirus pandemic; creating chaos for parents, kids, teachers and their states' economies. In perhaps their most craven move yet, these governors are jeopardizing the health and safety of school children, to appease Donald Trump and his anti-mask, anti-vaccine base. National crises like COVID-19 call for experienced and tested leadership — not performance art by con-men the likes of DeSantis and Abbott."

Watch it below.

Back to School