Charlie Crist slams Ron DeSantis for stoking ‘The Big Lie’

Crist_Desantis side_by_side (9)
The Congressman has called for a bipartisan commission investigating Florida ties to the Capitol riots.

U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, a Democratic candidate for Governor, pounded Gov. Ron DeSantis for continuing to let conspiracy theories fester.

The St. Petersburg Congressman said the Republican Governor won’t address right-wing extremism or embrace the truth about the November election.

“Three days ago, I challenged Governor DeSantis to reject the Big Lie and launch a bipartisan investigation into Florida-based hate group members and their connections to the January 6th insurrection at our nation’s Capitol,” Crist said. “Our Governor could have done the right thing to keep Floridians safe and stop violent hate groups from organizing in Florida. Instead, he has chosen partisanship and division.”

Crist said DeSantis has refused to openly reject a conspiracy theory that the November election was stolen from Donald Trump. On Jan. 6, Trump supporters sieged the Capitol and disrupted certification of President Joe Biden;s electoral college victory.

After Gannett newspapers published a report on Florida being tied for the most arrests related to the Capitol riots, Crist called for a bipartisan commission to investigate links to the event. The state is home to a particularly high number of members of two extremist groups with a significant presence at the riots, the Proud Boys and the Three Percenters.

DeSantis Press Secretary Christina Pushaw in a statement to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune dismissed the idea of a commission as “raw political opportunism” on the part of Crist.

“Any individuals who are found guilty of committing crimes should be held responsible for their own actions,” Pushaw told the newspaper, adding Crist’s proposal “is tailor-made for left-wing corporate media, not for everyday Floridians.”

“Moreover, Crist’s framing blames more than 20 million Floridians for the actions of a few, and that is simply unfair — and unserious,” she added.

Similarly, a proposal for a national bipartisan commission to explore what led to the riots stalled in Congress after Republican leadership rejected it. While legislation passed the House with some GOP support, Trump, who was impeached for inciting an insurrection but not convicted in the Senate, attacked Republicans who supported the commission in a statement.

DeSantis has repeatedly changed the subject when asked if he believed Biden won a fair election in November. Just last week, he said “very shady” things went on in other states.


“I think some of this ballot harvesting you see across the country is a huge, huge problem,” DeSantis said, referring to states that allow third parties to collect absentee ballots.

There is no evidence of widespread fraud that would have affected the outcome of the Presidential election, which Biden won by an identical electoral college margin as Trump had over Hillary Clinton in 2016.

“If Governor DeSantis can’t admit the truth about something as simple as who the duly elected President is, is there anything he won’t mislead the public about?” Crist said. “Just as troublingly, his silence is empowering the hate groups that fueled the insurrection of January 6th. Floridians deserve better.”

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]


  • zhombre

    June 22, 2021 at 9:04 am

    Bull$hit Charlie rides again. Any issue he can demagogue, he puts on the boiler. Lordy, I hope Crist has his @ss handed to him and is thus relegated to the obscurity of the back bench forevermore in Florida politics.

  • Debbie

    June 22, 2021 at 9:39 am

    Charlie Christ is an idiot. That’s all I can say!!!! 🤬

  • Ron Ogden

    June 22, 2021 at 9:47 am

    The media, which knows better and is in full CYA mode, resorts to the label “big lie” whenever legitimate questions about fraud in the election arise. There are very serious questions not only about this past election but about future elections, elections in which Democrat-related special interests even now are planning to meddle, including special interests in the Tampa Bay area. I predict our area is going to become the subterranean hq of a lot of very advanced–and very questionable–elections related tactics in the years ahead.

  • Tom Palmer

    June 22, 2021 at 10:49 am

    “Serious questions.” Really? Republicans just didn’t like the results and now are trying to re-engineer the system in their favor. Sure, Crist’s statements are political. He’s running for office. But to imply he’s the GOP isn’t doing the same thing is dishonest.

  • Richard

    June 22, 2021 at 11:03 am

    Crist is a USELESS turncoat. We remember what you did Charlie! Never again! I have spent lots of time updating all new Floridians I encounter on his past. He will be a disaster for Florida and quickly support whatever the left tells him to!

  • Wanda

    June 23, 2021 at 3:36 am

    Charlie is a very truthful man Ron is a trumpet to a dictator who tryed to destroy our capital,All Ron does is lie he needs to go let’s get rid of him .all he does is kiss trump ass

    • zhombre

      June 23, 2021 at 10:49 am

      “Charlie is a very truthful man.” LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL !!!!! Go back to listening to WMNF or watching Rachel Madcow on MSNBC.

  • Arthro

    June 23, 2021 at 8:35 am

    The Gestapo (Democrats) will try to portray truth tellers as crazy. They cheated during the last election, and anyone who opens their eyes knows that is the truth. This is just an attempt to bash DeSantis because his is too awesome.

    By the way, how can anyone take Charlie Crist seriously? The guy is a pandering, flip-flopping clown. When he was Governor, he could not accomplish anything, so he tried to jump to the US Senate and got hammered by Rubio. Is this really the best candidate that Democrats have in Florida?

  • Chaz

    June 23, 2021 at 5:09 pm

    Republicans keep saying how they do not like “big government” telling them what to do. Local communities should be able to make their own decisions about their communities. Today Gov. Desantis signed legislation requiring students, faculty and staff at Florida’s public universities and colleges to register their political views with the state. Excuse me? Supposedly this is to encourage “intellectual diversity.” Sounds more like “big government” sticking their nose where it does not belong. So, it’s ok to tell all Student’s Staff, and Teachers they must register their politcal vews with the State, but not launch a bipartisan investigation into Florida-based hate group members and their connections to the January 6th insurrection at our nation’s Capitol. What the heck is wrong with this picture?

  • David G

    June 24, 2021 at 12:32 pm

    Today Rudy Giuliani had his law license suspended for peddling the Big Lie, as Florida governor and his AG have.

    Is there one reason why DeSantis and Moody should not treated in the same way by the Florida Bar Association particularly for their actions in supporting the phony Texas lawsuit – that also resulted in an investigation of AG Paxton?

    Wake up Florida.

Comments are closed.


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