Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Press Secretary’s tweet suggests denial of Nazi protest
Image via AP..

pushaw
"Do we even known they're Nazis?" Christina Pushaw tweeted.

The Press Secretary for Gov. Ron DeSantis appeared Sunday night to question whether a Nazi flag hung from an Orange County bridge was in fact the effort of Nazis.

In a tweet she posted Sunday night and later deleted, Press Secretary Christina Pushaw responded to Twitter outrage over an Orlando Nazi demonstration by asking, “Do we even know they’re Nazis?”

Her tweet, which offered doubts rather than condemnations of the event, presented the unsupported prospect that those witnessed this weekend on a bridge holding a Nazi flag and shouting antisemitic oaths might have been Democratic staffers in disguise.

She later dismissed any assertion that she was denying the people on the bridge were Nazis, but she held to the theory she offered in her tweet.

“I don’t know what you mean by ‘denying Nazis.’ I was referring to this event in VA, when a group of Democrats dressed up as white supremacists to discredit a (Glenn) Youngkin rally,” she said in a response to Florida Politics.

Pushaw’s original tweet Sunday drew a firestorm of responses on social media, creating yet another controversy for the Governor’s Press Secretary.

In one of the harshest responses, Parkland gun law reform activist Fred Guttenberg tweeted, “Holy shit!!! @GovRonDeSantis, two weeks ago your press secretary @christinapushaw made a Hitler joke. This is now her response to the disgusting antisemitic Nazi behavior taking place in Florida this weekend, targeted at people like me. Is this your public position?”

Sen. Annette Taddeo, a Miami-Dade Democrat running for Governor, sent a letter to DeSantis urging him to denounce the demonstration, and calling out Pushaw by name.

“It was incredibly disappointing to see how your administration’s spokesperson, Christina Pushaw, took to Twitter in a now deleted tweet… not to denounce these actions but to instead politicize the situation and question if individuals displaying swastikas and flying Nazi flags were actually Nazis,” she wrote. “Being the spokesperson for your administration, bigoted comments such as these by your staff only embolden anti-semitic sentiment. By refusing to condemn these comments, you are sending a strong message to the Jewish people that your administration stands with these individuals.”

Although Pushaw deleted that particular tweet, she nonetheless continued to promote the prospect that the Orlando protesters might have been fake.

She liked and retweeted others’ posted tweets that seemed to come to her defense after criticism of her tweet emerged. Pushaw also responded to people who tried to connect the protesters to her boss, with a tweet declaring, “These aren’t ‘genuine questions’. It’s a dirty political smear attempt, and people who say things like this aren’t fooling anyone. Not anymore.”

Democratic Rep. Mike Grieco of Miami Beach tweeted: “Just because she deleted it doesn’t mean she didn’t tweet it.”

Pushaw also sent out a message contending the Governor opposes antisemitic attacks.

“Gov. Ron DeSantis has ALWAYS condemned antisemitic attacks & hatred, and he always will. To suggest otherwise is just plain wrong. I am confident that Florida law enforcement will respond appropriately and justice will be served to any protester who violates the law.”

In her written response to Florida Politics Monday morning, Pushaw alluded to reports that a Republican political rally in Virginia last October had included Lincoln Project members posing as white supremacists.

“The fact that Democrats attempt to smear Republicans by tying them to Nazis is sadly well documented. I deferred to law enforcement to determine who was behind the protest because frankly, I didn’t know anything about the group. But I can guarantee it wasn’t the Governor. Attempts to tie the protest to his policies are disgusting political smears,” Pushaw wrote.

“Nazi imagery and hate speech, whoever is using it, is never acceptable. Nobody from our office ever suggested it was,” she added.

Other Republican leaders found it far easier to condemn the Nazi message without implicating Democrats or discussing unrelated events in Virginia.

“Yesterday’s disgusting display of anti-Semitism in Orlando does not reflect the values of Floridians,” tweeted Florida Speaker of the House Chris Sprowls, a Palm Harbor Republican. “These thugs and their hateful messaging are not welcome in this state.”

Florida House Democratic Leader Evan Jenne at a press availability said there’s no truth to any suggestion Democratic staffers were behind the demonstration, and Pushaw knows that.

“We know it’s completely false,” the Dania Beach Democrat tweeted. “Her immediate deletion of that tweet shows she was just talking trash. No more or less.”

While Jenne said he appreciated that Pushaw’s tweet was quickly taken down, he said DeSantis himself still needs to weigh in with forceful words to condemn the hateful message.

“Call out that we don’t want neo-Nazis in the state of Florida. It’s not that difficult a statement to make,” Jenne said.

“I would hope the Governor would say he does not support neo-Nazis’ agenda or beliefs. That was not difficult for me to do right now, nor should it be difficult for the Governor’s press secretary. I think she realized she probably over-stepped when she deleted that tweet. We still need a more positive statement saying exactly where the Governor stands. I believe he would be against neo-Nazis, but the people of Florida need to hear that.”

The Governor’s Press Secretary’s tweets, including the one offering a potential denial of Nazi involvement, came after a gathering of about 20 demonstrators reportedly lined a bridge in eastern Orange County over the weekend, hanging the swastika flag and banners — including a banner with the pro-Donald Trump slogan “Let’s Go Brandon” — and yelling profanities and antisemitic slurs at passing cars.

Elected leaders in Florida slammed the presence of Nazi symbols and hateful messages.

“The neo-Nazi rallies in Orlando this weekend were a disgrace,” said U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, a Winter Park Democrat. “Central Florida is home to patriots of every political stripe — and we have no tolerance for these anti-Semitic and racist groups.”

State Sen. Randolph Bracy, an Ocoee Democrat, also weighed in. “Anti-Semitism is not welcomed here in our community. We love our Jewish brothers and sisters and I forcefully condemn the hateful acts of this weekend,” he said. “It is important that we as a community remain vigilant and that law enforcement acts swiftly against acts of anti-Semitism so that the message is clear — anti-Semitism will not be tolerated here.”

Scott Powers

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at [email protected]


44 comments

  • Matthew Lusk

    January 31, 2022 at 9:00 am

    Association smear Unjournalism, pathetic.

    • Plaid

      January 31, 2022 at 12:05 pm

      Why hasn’t desantis condemned his fanboys at that rally? Is he afraid to lose their donations?

      • Grung_e_Gene

        February 2, 2022 at 8:35 am

        No he afraid of losing their support when DeathSantis declares himself President he’ll be using them as a paramilitary terror squad

  • Frankie M.

    January 31, 2022 at 9:15 am

    We are no longer allowed to use the words “Nazis” or “Holocaust” as they might trigger some people on the right. We wouldn’t want to make anyone uncomfortable.

    • John Doe

      January 31, 2022 at 9:31 am

      Another Jussie Smollett fan ^^^^

      • Plaid

        January 31, 2022 at 12:06 pm

        ^^another nazi desperate to deflect. We’re you at the rally yourself nazi?

  • John Doe

    January 31, 2022 at 9:29 am

    We all know leftists lie and cheat and steal. Would it be a surprise if they did this? If you would be surprised, please contact me asap! I have some ocean front property to sell you in Belle Glade, FL. It’s a steal!!!

    • Sister Benignus Sardonicus, Institute for Mendacious Childlike Men

      January 31, 2022 at 10:36 am

      Johnnie, if you have evidence that leftists lie and cheat and steal, you should turn it over to law enforcement instead of just saying it as if it’s okay and that’s just the way it is. This is a very serious matter, and it is very clear that you are a very serious man, one who should know better. Now, you get on the phone right away and call the cops, Johnnie, tell them what you know. Then get on down to the station and sign statements for them.They will be ever so grateful for your crime-solving assistance, bless your heart.

      • greg tierney

        January 31, 2022 at 11:51 am

        Well said, sister.

    • Plaid

      January 31, 2022 at 11:52 am

      We all know conservatives pal around with Nazi scum. It isn’t even a tiny bit of a stretch to see some Nazis cheering on Deathsantis, after all he’s a dirty fascist.

    • Phil Morton

      January 31, 2022 at 12:21 pm

      Consider yourself contacted. Where’s that property or are just making crap up like Christina?

    • You wish

      February 1, 2022 at 7:43 am

      Nazi boy

    • FloridaBred

      February 1, 2022 at 3:45 pm

      Christina Pushaw is that you?! Clever pseudonym!

  • politics

    January 31, 2022 at 10:12 am

    Once upon a time someone some where went under investigation and quite frankly is still on. lefties are tired of the lining cheating government organized crime along with its jockeys.(corps). Tired of government law enforcement relaying to organized crime about things.tired of prying eyes using the camera and mics to get goods of of unsuspecting people.
    connections in other countries to make havoc.before the blame game see and possibly hear.remember things can zoom down seeing you picky the nose . and please tell the guy stay out of my computer this is just a toy. should we back tape live? and tell miss 3rd world ass she should be in prison.what a mistake work for your dam education and stop mocking.and leave a person alone( Good insight)p.s we thing the bill thing was a scam.should have plead the 5th. and the gambling is just a billion dollar give away. read your own bios.for surveillance state no such thing.space aliens ghosts blah blah blah..And someone does not like the second floor because it is see through.china china china blah blah blah.we are not even the race. hand signals blah again

  • Matthew Lusk

    January 31, 2022 at 10:24 am

    It could very well be C.I.A. assets, FBI assets, Soros assets or other Bilderberg assets, and it could be unfortunately ignorant neo NAZIs. But to smear Christina and fake a false association with no shred of evidence is pathetic smear Unjournalism.

    • Plaid

      January 31, 2022 at 11:53 am

      The association already exists. It’s hilarious that you would desperately try to make up some fanciful story about the CIA while the governor is an open fascist.

      • Concern Citizen

        February 1, 2022 at 1:20 pm

        Matthew Lusk is a nut job. Not trying to be means, but if you have looked at his post over time, he makes QAnon BS look credible.

      • Matthew Lusk

        February 1, 2022 at 7:06 pm

        The CIA has colluded with the Builder erg Group since 1957 if not before. IVe only seen prima facie evidence from 1957. But one can presume since the Organiser of the NSA/CIA, William Harding Jackson, investment banker, was there from the beginning.

    • FloridaBred

      February 1, 2022 at 3:47 pm

      Where were you on January 6th, Matthew?

      • Matthew Lusk

        February 1, 2022 at 7:00 pm

        Texas desert. Jan 6 rioters did the crime now they can do the time. There is a vacuum in the United States of true Patriots. Being a Patriot at this juncture means actively seeking positions of power legally. There is a minuscule amount of patriotic candidates. Inaction means the crime syndicates win out. Patriots have the best interest of all citizens at heart. Daniel’s last words were those who wish to rule must be just and fear GOD. If God didn’t love All the races of the world and the two genders, he would not have created them. One must love his neighbors as his self.

  • Matthew Lusk

    January 31, 2022 at 10:27 am

    And it could easily be an illegal Ukrainian, as the NAZI party flourishes in Ukraine with NATO help and color revolution agitators.

    • Sister Benignus

      January 31, 2022 at 10:40 am

      Matthew, that picture of you (is it you? how do we know it’s you?) in front of books is so ironic. It’s as if you want to appear learned, scholarly, and wise. It just cracks me up, bless your heart!

      • Matthew Lusk

        January 31, 2022 at 12:48 pm

        I love the Knowledge, entertainment, and wisdom found in books. This photo was taken in my 1970 single wide in Jacksonville in 2020. However, I’m not like Agassi, Image means relatively nothing in God’s eyes. However, cleanliness and hygiene do mean a lot to neighbors. I’ve gotten such enjoyment out of my books, I like to show them off like a mother or father would their kids. 🙂

        • Doug

          January 31, 2022 at 5:38 pm

          the books are probably worth more than your single wide

        • You wish

          February 1, 2022 at 7:46 am

          I realize it’s not your native language, but we don capitalize all the nouns in a sentence.

    • Paul Alan

      January 31, 2022 at 6:47 pm

      Matthew, all those books have clearly helped develop your imagination. Why stop there? Let’s develop this fantasy… It could easily be an illegal space alien as the nazi party might flourish in some distant galaxy. But snark aside, maybe you should find a book that explains Occam’s Razor.

  • Florence Bradley

    January 31, 2022 at 10:46 am

    The left tried 2 fake impeachments and infiltrated the Jan 6 peaceful Trump rally/March with dems wearing Trump gear. Many saw them get off buses and merge into the Trump March to the Capital. They are also the ones who entered the Capital first. The Capital police waved them in and one Capital police officer shot Ashley Babbit for doing nothing – it’s on video – and he was found not guilty of murder. All this stuff is on video but democrats try to avoid that. Typical lies like Clinton’s fake dossier flaming Trump Russian collusion. They’ll do anything to get rid of Trump because he is a threat to their socialist agenda. Wake up people!

    • Plaid

      January 31, 2022 at 11:55 am

      Lmao this is the most moronic comment I’ve ever seen. Everyone with two brain cells to rub together knows the insurrection was Trump scum. Incredibly weak attempt you pathetic fiction writer. Your little story doesn’t work, it just makes you look like an idiot.

    • Dr. Foreskin

      February 1, 2022 at 7:10 am

      Florence. You need help. There are a bevy of anti-psychotic drugs that can help with your delusions.

    • Bobbo Liscous

      February 2, 2022 at 3:13 pm

      you’re one funny broad

  • Arm The Homeless

    January 31, 2022 at 11:01 am

    Is Christina auditioning for a FOX nOoZ spot after Gov. Ronny-Bobby flames out in the ’24 primaries?

    “I don’t know who did this, but it was probably Democrats” seems to be par for the course for Ronny-Bobby’s remoras

  • Ron Ogden

    January 31, 2022 at 11:03 am

    ” But I can guarantee it wasn’t the Governor. Attempts to tie the protest to his policies are disgusting political smears,” Pushaw wrote.”
    That’s right, and she did right to point it out.
    These kinds of false flag ops are routine in American politics. Anyone who thinks they aren’t is woefully ignorant of history. Sometimes even the media runs them.

    • Concern Citizen

      January 31, 2022 at 11:10 am

      Has DeSantis in a public statement denounce the Nazi and other similar hate groups such as the Proud Boys?

      • Plaid

        January 31, 2022 at 11:57 am

        Of course not, Deathsantis is a fascist. He loves those terrorists.

        • John Doe

          February 3, 2022 at 12:07 pm

          “Fascist” doesn’t mean what you think it means chump. Limited government, limited government control over citizens, each person doing what they think is best to look after themselves may be a lot of things, but ain’t fascist. Soros demands his money back for your Troll-failure.

    • Arm The Homeless

      January 31, 2022 at 11:14 am

      How often to Conservatives engage in “false flags”?

      Your comment seems a lot like projection.

      Sad!

    • Plaid

      January 31, 2022 at 11:56 am

      Nah, it’s just Nazi Deathsantis fans. Thinking otherwise is idiotic. Nice try though.

  • Plaid

    January 31, 2022 at 12:00 pm

    The governor is a dyed in the wool fascist, of course there are Nazis cheering him on in Florida. This is what happens when you pander to them and write a series of laws to support them. He’s an in-American scum bag.

  • PeterH

    January 31, 2022 at 1:44 pm

    DeSantis’s promotion of his anti- “WOKE” bill has given his Nazi sympathizers a green light to come out from under the Everglades slime.

    DeSantis can’t have it both ways! He’s been encouraging the very worst elements of the American experience to relocate to Florida. Pack up grandma and the double wide and come on down!

  • Old Voter

    January 31, 2022 at 3:07 pm

    Did anybody see Comm Ag Fried there? I just thought she might want to know what Nazi means.

  • Roger Stone's Turkish Batch attendant

    February 1, 2022 at 7:06 am

    Until you know who these people really are the Gasbag has a point.

    If these are lefties then we need to know who Roger Stone’s counterpoint is on the left.

    This stunt looks like a clear classic Roger Stone event probably staged to go after DeSantis. Trump’s jackboots have DeSantis in their sites.

    Notice how Ronny sticks to the narritive and blames the left. He has no authority to go after anybody within his own party because the large donors still favor Trump.

    • FloridaBred

      February 1, 2022 at 3:49 pm

      Desantis is an impotent little one term Governor without Trump. In fact Desantis would be a nobody without Trump.

      • John Doe

        February 3, 2022 at 12:04 pm

        So yer a little Nikki Freed crotch-sniffer huh? Talk about a lightweight…

Comments are closed.


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