Nikki Fried amps up ‘corruption’ attack on Ron DeSantis

The Commissioner was on MSNBC Friday.

Florida’s only statewide Democrat took to national television Friday to amplify criticism of the Governor’s vaccine distribution process, and in doing so, previewed a potential 2022 attack line.

Nikki Fried, the state’s Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services, slammed Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis for purported favoritism in vaccination site selection in “very exclusive communities.”

Fried has taken these concerns to the FBI and to Congress, and on MSNBC Friday she took them to a sympathetic news outlet

Fried decried as “egregious” the site selection, including in Ocean Reef, where resident and former Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner donated $250,000 to DeSantis, highlighting a nearly $4 million month for the Governor’s “Friends of Ron DeSantis” political committee.

“I don’t need a Harvard Law Degree to know that if there’s smoke, there’s fire,” said Fried, a former public defender and graduate of the University of Florida Levin School of Law.

Fried said she has asked for a “criminal investigation because some of this stuff is just too coincidental not to have a link to campaign contributions.”

The Governor denies these claims as a “hit piece,” saying he wasn’t involved in site selection.

The Commissioner also criticized the Governor for “shifting blame to other people” regarding accountability for the site selection, part of his “M.O. since taking office and since the pandemic started.”

“He needs to take some ownership of some of the things that are happening here in our state,” Fried said, describing it as “too coincidental” and reason for having “asked the FBI to engage.”

Fried also defended bringing the matter to the attention of Congress saying that it’s an “all hands on deck” situation.

“Things are happening here in Florida. It’s corruption at its worst,” the Commissioner said, adding that the “amount of corruption we have seen from this administration is mind-boggling.”

Noting that she has “vowed to stand up against corruption,” Fried said she hadn’t ruled out a run for Governor against DeSantis in 2022.

“As the only statewide elected Democrat, more and more people have come to me and asked me to run,” Fried said.

Fried, according to a recent Mason Dixon poll, faces long odds against DeSantis. But if she can make a corruption narrative stick, she may be able to make up ground from what are indeed early opinion surveys.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has been a correspondent for since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at [email protected]


  • RWE

    March 5, 2021 at 5:59 pm

    When you strike at the King, you must kill him.

  • Donald Johnson

    March 5, 2021 at 7:25 pm

    Gov. De Santis apparently learned the self imploding game from his mentor, Donald Trump.

    He has been setting himself up for a strong Democrat opponent.

    The anti-DeSantis ads are writing themselves.

    His incompetency, lack of attention to covid vaccination disasters and cover ups will be ripe for attacks if he runs for re-election.

    I hope Democrats run a strong, honest and pro business candidate, not an identity politics idiot.

  • Ron Ogden

    March 5, 2021 at 7:59 pm

    She is following the CNN/AP/MSNBC playbook. All this does is play to the base, and in Florida the base failed to elect Gillum in ’18 and Biden in ’20. She’s not going to attract one NPA vote with this tactic, and the Demi party organization is in far too great a state of collapse to help her, or Charlie, next year.

  • Harold Finch

    March 6, 2021 at 9:09 am

    But, she is absolutely right! Even though she has no chance of beating ole Gov Ronnie!!

  • Palmer Tom

    March 6, 2021 at 10:11 am

    Seems DeSantis’ claims of non-involvement are falling apart. See Sun-Sentinel story.

  • Carol Woodson

    March 6, 2021 at 1:33 pm

    She wants his job – playing politics – people are suck and tired of those tactics-

    • Charlotte Greenbarg

      March 6, 2021 at 5:28 pm

      These Dems are unspeakable. Fried’s engaged to a married man who beats her and is in the cannabis business which she tried to get control of in her official capacity. She’s been running for Governor the day she was elected. I’m working on a cartoon of her. A cross between Cruella DeVille and Morticia.
      Farmer abused MSD students after the massacre when he and McGhee cooked up a scheme to try to get a gun control issue heard while the House was in Session, but it hadn’t been through any committees. They knew it couldn’t be heard but they did it anyway because students from MSD were in the gallery and they wanted to try to make the Speaker (R) look bad. Of course the Speaker had to rule it out of order. But the students didn’t know what was going on. They thought the Speaker refused to discuss it and one young woman cried. Farmer should be run out of town on a rail after being tarred and feathered.

      • Marc Lawrence

        March 8, 2021 at 12:03 am

        Gary Farmer’s best buddy was supported by Strum and DeSantis in a coup at the Board of Broward Health – a major Democrat donor taking out a Republican. Was widely reported but they have gotten away with it.

  • Frankie M.

    March 6, 2021 at 2:11 pm

    Quick! Time for Ronnie to hold another photo op at EWC. Biden really bailed Ronnie out with those FEMA camps. Seems to be the only place where you can actually get the vaccine if you don’t have $$ or connections.

  • Charlotte Greenbarg

    March 6, 2021 at 4:49 pm

    I’m working on a cartoon of Fried. Looks a lot like Cruela deVille/Morticia.

  • Sonja Fitch

    March 7, 2021 at 6:45 am

    Duffus Desantis is willingly slaughtering Floridians! Look at the bs rollout of the vaccines by Duffus Desantis! Rich white folks that give him pac dollars are rewarded with the vaccines. The rest of the State is being systematically ignored til Duffus Desantis gets his money! Federal vaccines sites are the saving grace for the majority of Floridians needing vaccines. Vote Democrat up and down ballot for the elections in 2022!

  • Charlotte Greenbarg

    March 7, 2021 at 8:03 am

    This is Sonja Fitch” I perceive it as free speech:’ Vulgar anti-Trump signs return to Jacksonville Beach home”. Vulgar says it all She puts the vulgarity on her fence where the neighborhood kids see it. Neighbors object but she doesn’t care. Lovely From First Coast news.

Comments are closed.


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