Gov. Ron DeSantis expressed hope Friday that First Lady Casey DeSantis would be “cancer free” at some point this year. But her treatment for breast cancer is still underway, he stressed in comments during a news conference in Lake Butler.
“So, we’re not out of the woods,” DeSantis said before describing the dilemma of how much to divulge about the First Lady’s health battles.
“We’ve talked amongst ourselves,” DeSantis added, “about, ‘OK, she’s a public figure, a lot of people care about her, and a lot of people have been praying for her.’ And that makes a huge difference to us and we really appreciate it.”
“At the same time, it’s a medical issue for the family, which is generally a private thing. So we felt it was important to let people know that she was dealing with it at the outset,” DeSantis continued. “Occasionally people will ask and I’ll provide some updates.”
The Governor again took note of speculation that he was vacationing because he had nothing listed for a given day on his public calendar, when, in fact, he was with the First Lady for one of her in-hospital cancer treatments.
“A lot of these people, some in the media, but a lot of these politicians who you know are trying to get some traction, they said, ‘Oh, he’s out vacationing’ and all this stuff. It turns out we were down in Tampa doing this treatment and it’s not easy to go through for her and it’s certainly not fun to watch somebody have to go through that, to watch your spouse go through that,” DeSantis said.
“It is a tough thing. She has times where she is really good and times where it really takes a toll,” said DeSantis. “It’s not like it’s just the same every day.”
“We’re not through with it. We’re close to the end. But our view is that 2022 will be the year where we can say she’s cancer free, and that is something that is really important.”
DeSantis has addressed the seeming confusion his political “enemies” had about the demands created by the First Family’s current situation at other recent news conferences.
“When you’re in the political arena, sometimes you’re fortunate with the enemies you have. Because these people just aren’t shooting straight,” DeSantis said at a news conference Monday.
At that event, he also addressed the very real toll the treatments take on both Casey and himself.
The Governor lampooned critics saying, “Oh my God, he’s on vacation,” before reminding reporters of the real reason for his absence.
“I just looked at my wife. I’m like, ‘Going to the hospital with you is not a vacation for you. I know that,’” DeSantis said. “This is something that as a husband, I think I should be doing. I’ve accompanied her to all her chemotherapy treatments. She’s there for a long time. I’m there most of the time.”
“But it’s a draining thing,” the Governor added. “When she’s done with it, it’s not something that’s great to see.”
Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez were among those who razzed the Governor for being out of pocket.
“Hasn’t Gov. DeSantis been inexplicably missing for like two weeks? If he’s around, I would be happy to say hello,” AOC tweeted last week, ahead of Fox News reporting that the Governor was by the First Lady’s side during cancer treatments.