‘Governor who?’: Joe Biden dismisses Ron DeSantis’ tirade
Joe Biden. Image via AP.

biden jul 16
Tensions over the resurgent pandemic boiled over this week.

After Gov. Ron DeSantis‘ lengthy rebuttal to President Joe Biden‘s rebuke of his pandemic response, Biden dismissed DeSantis’ speech in a five-word rebuttal Thursday.

“Governor who?” Biden said, laughing off a reporter’s request for comment. “That’s my response.”

After Biden told DeSantis and other Republicans to “get out of the way” of local governments trying to combat the virus on Tuesday, DeSantis responded Wednesday, telling the President that he was “standing in your way” and “I don’t want to hear a blip about COVID from you.”

DeSantis’ four-minute retort, a possible preview of the 2024 presidential race, drew national headlines. Meanwhile, the Governor’s campaign committee highlighted his remarks in a fundraising email that evening.

DeSantis’ press secretary, Christina Pushaw, tweeted a sarcastic response after Biden’s quip.

“Totally cool and normal…” she wrote.

Rising tensions between Biden and DeSantis appeared to boil over this week. That followed an executive order DeSantis issued Friday banning school mask requirements. And in the subsequent days, Florida hit grim records for daily COVID-19 hospitalizations.

During a press conference Tuesday, Biden called bans against mask and vaccine mandates the “worst of all,” both of which DeSantis has issued.

“If some governors aren’t willing to do the right thing to beat this pandemic, then they should allow businesses and universities who want to do the right thing to be able to do it,” Biden said. “I say to these governors, please help. If you’re not going to help, at least get out of the way of people who are trying to do the right thing.”

When asked by name, Biden criticized DeSantis and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for making personal decisions detrimental to public health.

“I believe the results of their decisions are not good for their constituents, and it’s clear to me and to most medical experts that the decisions being made like not allowing mask mandates in school are bad health policy,” Biden said.

Like on Thursday, the President similarly dismissed DeSantis’ handling of the pandemic during that press conference. At its conclusion, a reporter asked Biden why he doesn’t call DeSantis.

“To say happy birthday? What?” Biden responded. “He knows the message. We had a little discussion when I was down there. He knows the message. He’s decided.”

Biden was last in Florida in early July, in the aftermath of the condo collapse in Surfside. That tragedy yielded an unusual respite from the sharp criticisms DeSantis frequently lobs at the White House.

DeSantis’ relationship with Biden strongly contrasts with the relationship he shared with President Donald Trump during his term. Trump, who paved DeSantis’ path to the Governor’s Mansion with his endorsement, repeatedly praised the Governor as a friend and effective leader.

With DeSantis facing reelection next year and a possible 2024 run, tensions aren’t likely to cool in the near future.

Renzo Downey

Renzo Downey covers state government for Florida Politics. After graduating from Northwestern University in 2019, Renzo began his reporting career in the Lone Star State, covering state government for the Austin American-Statesman. Shoot Renzo an email at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.


44 comments

  • Ron Ogden

    August 5, 2021 at 7:11 pm

    I doubt he can recall his wife’s name, either.

    • Ed

      August 5, 2021 at 7:20 pm

      Exactly, and he probably doesn’t know who Barack Obama is either. I’ll say it again, everyday Jimmy Carter wakes up he thanks the American people.

    • GD

      August 6, 2021 at 10:28 am

      I’d be more worried about how many more will die so DeSantis can make political point running for president?
      I’m guess you haven’t read or more likely ignoring the polls DeFascist is dropping fast, Crist climbing because he is throwing everyone under the covid bus and we won’t
      forget it.
      The 66% smart people don’t like what DeFascist is doing cutting the ability of local governments to make the right choices for them.
      The meaning of Fascist is a government/business cabal to seize power and ignore the people which is exactly what DeFascist is and the repub party has become.

      • zhombre

        August 6, 2021 at 12:52 pm

        “Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power.”
        Posting that quote from Mussolini, w/o endorsing it, merely putting it up as part of the historical record, got me suspended from Facebook. Actually, to your point, I think the Democrats acting in collusion with the tech oligarchs to ban information and opinion on social media (Hunter Biden’s laptop and the suspension of the NY Post, for example) are closer to that definition of fascism. If you were to research, you’d see a lot of execs from Silicon Valley now work for the Biden administration; and if you did further reserarch you would see great dollops of Wall Street money donated to the Democrats. But, in place of research and criticial thinking, it remains easier to shout DeFASCIST and damn the rethugs. Talk about Pavlovian responses!

  • Andrew Finn

    August 5, 2021 at 7:28 pm

    HaHa – Great response Joe !!!!!! I wish here in Florida we were able to say “Governor who” and have him be just a bad memory, instead of the moronic fool he is try in to “play God” when he can’t even “play governor” !!!!!!

    • Ed

      August 5, 2021 at 7:36 pm

      Biden has to attack Republican Governor’s because his poling numbers are down. His handling of the border crisis, crime up at every major city, people not working anymore, and on and on. So hie is trying to turn the narrative on the Republican Party. Won’t work. He will be a lame duck in 2022. Nancy will give up the gavel, and I will LMAO. By the way Kamala’s handling of the border crisis, if she was in the private sector, she would have been fired along time ago.

      • Ronald Martin

        August 6, 2021 at 2:06 am

        I take offense to President Biden being President demintiea its ashame that Deathdesantis that been so moronass to put our school children as pons on the varirant chess board. Insurrection President rtrump big lie that the election was stolen and is still going on about it causing people to not vax although we are seeing Dethdesantis campaigning while hospitals fill up covid wards with new infections. 11,000 four days straight these are dark days for his adminstration. Please want you think he should be trying to save lives of floridians urging them to get vaxed we lead nation in cases and hopilization come on we need to stop politicizing covid

        • zhombre

          August 6, 2021 at 10:48 am

          Barely literate. Is this a parody?

    • Bernie Hofmann.

      August 7, 2021 at 10:29 pm

      I agree Andrew.

  • zhombre

    August 5, 2021 at 7:41 pm

    President Dementia disses the governor of the third most populous state of the union a few days after calling for the resignation of the Dem governor of the 4th most populous state while the Dem gov of the most populous state faces recall. This plays well with idiots like Andrew Finn but it remains a variation of ‘whistling past the graveyard’ while the inept Biden administration plummets in approval and begins to implose. Laugh while you can, Finny boy.

    • zhombre

      August 5, 2021 at 7:44 pm

      * implode

    • Tom

      August 5, 2021 at 8:16 pm

      Well stated, I’ll buy some of that for tjb, Palmer, Hoffmann, Alex, Frankie, Peterh and Red Sonja. Regrets to others who are just as deranged but left out.
      Dems are in cocoon, it’s to complicated for them to follow.Comps zHombre

      • Tjb

        August 6, 2021 at 11:23 am

        Wise words from a DeSantis’s minion? You comments are usually personal attacks. Name calling is so sophisticate.

        • zhombre

          August 6, 2021 at 12:42 pm

          Oh, did I hurt your feelings with some remark? Only words, only words. From A “DeSantis minion” LOL.
          “We call a nettle but a nettle and the faults of fools but folly.” That’s Shakespeare. One of those dead white men banished from the decolonized university.

          • tjb

            August 6, 2021 at 12:51 pm

            No, you did not hurt my feelings. The words came from a fool.

          • zhombre

            August 6, 2021 at 12:56 pm

            Yes, so do yours LOL. You angry son of a nettle you.

        • Bernie Hofmann

          August 7, 2021 at 10:31 pm

          I concur

        • Tom

          August 8, 2021 at 1:39 am

          Wah, Wah
          Typical liberal extremist.
          U Can dish it out and u can’t take it.
          You are just a hater period.
          You love to smear America’s Governor with false charges and anyone who advocates on his behalf. I think I listed all the real minions. I pity all you fools gladly.

      • Tom Palmer

        August 9, 2021 at 5:57 pm

        You need some new material

        • Tom

          August 10, 2021 at 11:55 am

          Oh excuse me Palmer. Your 45 yrs in journalism. LMAO.
          How about corrupt predator Andrew Cuomo, how about his book earning $5 million off of dead covid people, really?He decimated his state. How bout lockdown Cali Gov incompetent Newsom. Likely recall defeat. How bout Gov Northam the VA racist. His Lt Gov is worse. Your liberal media covers this all up.
          America’s Gov, Florida’s Gov stands on angels wings compared to this garbage. Don’t tell me, all you Manchurian bots are a disgrace. This good man pilloried by the extremist left. Gov and First Lady just concluded a wonderful availability whether he honored first responders. God Bless him and family. If this was a Dem your media would be calling it Camelot.

    • Andrew Finn

      August 5, 2021 at 10:09 pm

      Oh my !!!! it’s late and all I can think of is — “OH YEAH?” HaHa.

  • Charles

    August 5, 2021 at 7:57 pm

    You are a journalistic embarrassment.
    SHAMEFUL , UTTERLY SHAMEFUL
    You intentionally omitted the portions of the governors comment that didn’t fit your narrative.
    Have you no INTEGRITY

  • A Stray Vulcan

    August 5, 2021 at 10:44 pm

    We recently picked up some stray radio signals from a guy named “Rubber Duck Biden” talking at about his great history as an 18 wheeler driver. Apparently getting ready to haul some very expensive artwork by the Hunter Biden to a showing. Unless he gets arrested with Nelson Mandela. Or gets another law school scholarship.

  • Ocean Joe

    August 5, 2021 at 10:57 pm

    Somehow, the guy with dementia whipped Trump’s ass badly. You know this. He is grifting off you right now. 60 frivolous lawsuits and a couple of whacky audits and Q-nonsense that Trump will be installed (like a dictator) in August. When sued by Dominion, Sidney Powell (Trump’s lawyer) asserted as a defense that no reasonable person would believe her claims were serious.
    And yet here we are with the bundle of you guys clinging to the flotsam of the Trumptanic flopping around in the corruption slick that is all that remains.
    You guys are still shell-shocked from America’s governor trailing Chaingang Charlie, and barely besting Nikki Fried. It’s OK. You’ll get over it.

    • Ocean Joe

      August 5, 2021 at 10:59 pm

      From the basement…he really didn’t even have to campaign, people were that disgusted with the carnage brought by the stable genius.

      • Tom

        August 5, 2021 at 11:07 pm

        Yeah that’s cause your lefty media saved him. Trump., Trump, like Manchurians Bots u all chant.
        Can’t you all get new talking points.
        My regrets As I left you off the list after zHombre first post. You all are Ill. Hate has destroyed u all.

        • Bernie Hofmann

          August 7, 2021 at 10:34 pm

          No Tom. President Biden defeated Ex President Trump by over 7.1 million votes.

          Joseph Robinette Biden is the president of the United States.

          America is Back!

          • Tom

            August 8, 2021 at 1:48 am

            Yes polling places in 5 states closed at midnight for over 12 hrs. Voting rules changers Back? Another Manchurian bot. No one said he’s not. A new named ignorant one.

    • Tom

      August 8, 2021 at 1:42 am

      Seaweed joe, chamber Florida poll has America’s Governor up 10 pts vs both incompetents. It’s not close.

  • Monica Sambatino

    August 6, 2021 at 12:37 am

    Tell him Governor! Moron doesn’t even know he’s alive! Still waiting on his cure for cancer he said he had while he was campaigning!

    • Bernie Hofmann.

      August 7, 2021 at 10:35 pm

      Monica. Please keep underestimating President Biden. He and the rest of us real Americans will step around you and move forward with our great nation!

  • Tom Palmer

    August 6, 2021 at 9:06 am

    I enjoy the Pavlovian comic relief from the Zombie and the his friends.

    • zhombre

      August 6, 2021 at 12:54 pm

      See comment above, Tom, you old reprobate. And I suppose comments like those posted by Sonja Fitch (see below, under your reading glasses) are not knee-jerk at all, eh?

      • Tom Palmer

        August 10, 2021 at 10:03 am

        Sonja’s in a category by herself

  • Sonja Fitch

    August 6, 2021 at 11:15 am

    Duffus Desantis is willingly slaughtering Floridians! Yep now Duffus Desantis wants our children to get him some pr . Stfu get out Desantis!

    • Ed

      August 6, 2021 at 11:34 am

      Interesting doofus Sonja has no comment on the NY slaughterhouse from “D” Cuomo last year and no comment about the over one million illegals crossing our border with a 15% positive rate. If Kamala worked
      In the private sector her incompetence would have been fired long ago. Finally the fact that Dementia Joe picked Harris over Demings as VP doesn’t bode well for her Senate run.

      • Bernie Hofmann

        August 7, 2021 at 10:38 pm

        Dodo. You are desperately deflecting. Florida if a nation, has the 3rd highest per capita Covid rate in the world.

        Responsible state leadership and an educated populous would have changed that.

      • Tom

        August 8, 2021 at 2:02 am

        Ed, Red Sonja does not know bout predator N Y Governor. Cocoon, totally protected under Manchurian law.
        Martin libtards don’t care. They’d rather live in lockdown. Mental handicapped as they witnessed others in lockdown bondage.

  • martin

    August 6, 2021 at 3:04 pm

    In other news: Joe likes ice cream and mid-afternoon naps.
    This is the same guy that hide in his basement during the worst part of covid in 2020. He had no clue as to what was happening in NY with cumo in the nursing homes. Or with Whitmer either.

    Gov. Ron made it his priority to see that the most vulnerable were vaccinated first; the elderly. Next he led one of the best organized vaccine roll-outs in the nation. Anyone who wanted to receive it could be easily vaccinated in their own local neighborhood Grocery.
    He kept our state economy open and functioning. We did not see the mass exodus of business from our state to other states. Witness clueless NY!

    What we are seeing right now is a simple surge of a new variant. We are approx. 4 weeks behind Europe and India. Follow the path of delta in those regions and you will see it phased out within 4-5 weeks.
    We are not witnessing mass deaths. ICU beds are still open. Yet the main-stream media continues to portray delta as the plague of doom.
    Wise up, take your precautions and get on with with your life.
    Biden is not a leader. Gov. Ron is….or would you rather have had that addicted meth addict as our gov?

  • Bernie Hofmann.

    August 7, 2021 at 10:41 pm

    Delta is attacking Florida and the other Southern red states as if it were a cruise missile.

    Responsible leadership, leadership in the white evangelical churches and an educated population that believes in science would have changed that.

    As someone stated approx 125 years ago, Southern Ignorance!

  • martin

    August 8, 2021 at 1:20 pm

    Yankee go home. I-95 takes you north!

  • Tom

    August 10, 2021 at 12:25 pm

    Cuomo resigned, predator and mass destroyer of N Y state, fondled dozens women and decimated people lives. Next now defeat Cali incompetent Gov lockdown Newsom and America’s Gov DeSantis will be re elected by 10 pts Nov/22. Manchurian Dems disaster coming. 40 U S House seat loss/flip and 6 Senate seats. Enjoy!

  • Jeanie

    August 11, 2021 at 5:24 pm

    It’s only August. COVID will get much worse in the next few months. When schools close again and we revert to online learning since some are not taking COVID seriously, parents can juggle kids at home while they are trying to work, kids at home while they are at work (and figure out childcare), companies can deal with meetings again having kids in the background along with employees not as able to fully work. And lots of kids in hospitals. And they can thank politicians like Desantis.

Comments are closed.


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