Progress Florida poses questions for Ron DeSantis about Matt Gaetz
Matt Gaetz with Ron DeSantis. Image by Jacob Ogles.

Gaetz DeSantis
Everyone has questions. When will there be answers?

Gov. Ron DeSantis has yet to take any questions about long-time political ally Matt Gaetz’s growing sex scandal. But liberal activist group Progress Florida suggests the public deserves answers from Florida’s chief executive.

In an email blast on Friday, Progress Florida posited a dozen questions DeSantis should answer, even if he hasn’t been directly implicated in Gaetz’s alleged misdeeds. Many stem from DeSantis’ gubernatorial campaign in 2018, when Gaetz was a near-constant presence at DeSantis’ side and ultimately led his transition team. More recently, Gaetz has touted DeSantis as a presidential candidate on right-wing outlets like Fox News.

Progress Florida’s questions include some basics still unaddressed on this, day three of GaetzGate:

— Do you have a reaction to the accusations against him?

— When and how did you learn about these accusations?

— Have you spoken to him about them?

— When was the last time you spoke to him?

These could satiate curiosity regardless of DeSantis’ answers. The Governor has been known in the past to make hard breaks with former associates, such as Susie Wiles, who helped manage his victorious but close race for Governor in the final stretch.

Some dig for information on what Gaetz may have shared in the past, particularly based on allegations he showed nude photos to fellow members of Congress, where DeSantis was a close colleague:

— Did he ever show you pictures of nude women he claimed to have slept with?

— Are you aware of him paying women for sex?

— Are you aware of Gaetz ever having had sexual contact with a minor?

Based on the now-widely discussed reputation Gaetz had in political circles for wild behavior, Progress Florida suggests the Governor explain ever putting the Congressman in a position of influence, asking the following questions:

— Gaetz already had a reputation when you hired him to manage your transition. Can you explain why you’re friends and why you trusted him with such an important job?

— Would you consider hiring him again?

— Do you believe Gaetz or his accusers?

Finally, the group suggests DeSantis weigh in on some criminal elements and the matter of consequence:

— Do you have any knowledge of Gaetz using ecstasy or other illegal drugs?

— Do you think he should resign?

It seems unlikely DeSantis will forever evade questions about Gaetz, though it’s also doubtful he will address the full dozen pointed queries. But it may at least give regional reporters at popup sites and promotional events to bring some hard-hitters to the Q&A.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected]


6 comments

  • tom palmer

    April 11, 2021 at 2:05 am

    If I were DeSantis, I’d say nothing,

  • Melinda K Thomas

    April 11, 2021 at 10:53 am

    I think it would be stupid for DeSantis to comment or answer any of these questions. There are no facts to support this nonsense. Why don’t we go after Andrew when there are nothing but facts to support his dirty deeds?

  • PD

    April 11, 2021 at 12:12 pm

    Too many politicians are getting away with way too much, on both sides of the aisle. We have a constitution and ethics laws for a reason. ENFORCE THEM. Trump sidestepped the constitution at every turn and nothing was done by his cowardly Republican cohorts. Even small violations should be met with punishment, even if it’s just censuring. Common folk can’t break the law and get the police or courts to let it slide. Laws and a constitution are no good if not enforced.

    • Fred

      April 12, 2021 at 9:42 am

      Agreed and well put. I paid more than $750 in taxes the year that Trump paid such a paltry sum. I trust that you paid more than $750, as well. Also, you have worry about the judgment of these two men. DeSantis allows monied constituents access to vaccinations and makes arbitrary decisions about reopening the state. Gaetz has the balls to wear a gas mask as a parody of COVID precaution while fellow statesmen perish. Two inane, entitled frat brothers that have stayed at the keg party too long.

    • Janis Lentz

      April 16, 2021 at 5:04 am

      Right on! Republican elected officials MUST be held accountable for their sleazy personal behavior! Remember the D.C. Madame, her little black book, and the officials who had to resign in that scandal???

  • jimmypete

    April 15, 2021 at 9:15 am

    They say DeSantis is Trump with competence. What the heck does that mean. Trump was defined by his incompetence. Does that mean that Ron will lie more competently??

Comments are closed.


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