Did Ron DeSantis pass the Bill Maher test?

DeSantis Maher
'If your campaign was going well, you wouldn't be on this show.'

After a monologue in which Bill Maher riffed on Donald TrumpBob Menendez, and the marital dynamic of Mike and Karen Pence, the host asked Ron DeSantis to rate the opening remarks.

The Republican presidential hopeful was a guest on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” Friday night as the show returned from hiatus after the recently ended Writers Guild of America strike.

“Laughing on both sides of the aisle” was how DeSantis described it by way of kicking off his latest foray into interviews by politically incorrect provocateurs.

DeSantis soon enough had to laugh when the joke was on him, though. After he trumpeted “no vax mandates” in Florida, Maher countered with a riff about “cowboy boots and a suit,” a reference to the Governor’s fashion trademark.

Maher suggested Florida wasn’t known for cowboys; DeSantis disarmed him by going deadpan and earnest, noting that the state is loaded with cattle ranches.

DeSantis laughed, meanwhile, when Maher floated the prospect of “getting Doug Burgum out of the race.” But the host scrutinized his guest, wondering why DeSantis was bothering to run against Donald Trump.

“If your campaign was going well, you wouldn’t be on this show,” Maher quipped, a seeming reference to the Governor’s penchant for friendly interviewers in recent years.

Maher continued his assault soon enough, noting correctly that DeSantis “campaigned for election deniers in 2022,” such as Kari Lake.

“Now she’s attacking me, so maybe I made a mistake there,” DeSantis quipped before defending the endorsement as wanting “Republicans to win key races.”

Maher then baited DeSantis into discussing “woke,” which DeSantis dismissed as a “caricature” of his more nuanced position before offering practiced remarks about crime in California and the CDC.

“You were right. You did handle it better,” Maher said about DeSantis regarding COVID-19. “They’re not giving you credit.”

Maher then trashed a “despicable” New York Times piece, which he said was titled “How Ron DeSantis (fouled) up the pandemic.”

For his part, the Governor stayed on talking points rather than ad-libbing.

Maher then turned on DeSantis, asking about a push against voter fraud investigations.

“We’ve had local elections decided by 15, 25, 30 votes in recent issues,” DeSantis protested.

Maher said, “It looks like you’re trying to stop Black people from voting.” Then he went on to grill DeSantis about the six-week abortion ban.

“The Legislature identified the moment there was a detectable heartbeat,” DeSantis said.

The segment closed with Maher getting the last laugh regarding the Gavin Newsom debate.

“You know he’s taller and better looking, right?”

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • My Take

    September 29, 2023 at 11:33 pm

    “How Ron DeSantis (fouled) up the pandemic.”

    Speaking of . . .
    Do DeSStortis and his henchman Loquacko disparage the RSV and flu vaccines too?

    • Joe

      September 30, 2023 at 9:25 am

      Stupid fking Maher for not calling out DeSantis for fudging the Covid numbers in Fl as witnessed by his raid and arrest of a worker trying to keep accurate records. And FL schools are the worst! FK BILL MAHER with is anti-woker dmfk agenda.

      • Impeach Biden

        September 30, 2023 at 10:48 am

        Let me guess, you think Rebekah Jones is a real scientist. She is a known nut . Just read about her history. The other nut Nikki Fried was one of the believers of her nonsense along with MSNBC, and CNN. Rebekah fell off the map on everyone realized she was a kook.

        • Biscuit

          September 30, 2023 at 1:51 pm

          “Let me guess,” you think you don’t come off as sounding nuts.
          Stupid human.

          • Impeach Biden

            September 30, 2023 at 4:18 pm

            Look her up Biscuit.

          • ScienceBLVR

            September 30, 2023 at 5:20 pm

            No worries Biscuit, some humans like Peachy Biden are still chasing the Rebekah Jones train, even though there’s no point. Some species of humans are just not as bright as the Canis lupus familiaris..woof woof

  • Earl Pitts American

    September 30, 2023 at 7:41 am

    Good mornting Leftys and RINO’s,
    Here’s the wild card you all forgot about:
    Rememder the “Never Trumpers”?
    Sure you do. There were enough of them to give the last POTUS election to Biden. No “Dook 4 Brains” they did not vote Biden. They just did not vote Trump.
    Well here at The Trustworthy Earl Pitts American Fan Club’s Poly Sci Division we found an accurate method of identifying and polling the “Never Trumpers” and an impressive 86.45% are fully comitted to Ron Desantis. Most stating that Desantis does not hurt their precious feelings the way Trump did.
    Regardless of their reasons there are “Just Two Things” you need to know about the Never Trumpers.
    Two Things:
    1. ) They cost us the election back in 2020 and were the #1 reason we got saddled with Biden.
    2. ) They are going to cost Trump the 2024 election …. but this time (2024) the Never Trumpers are massively supporting and pledging their votes, along with their precious feelings, overwhelmenly to Desantis.
    What you need to know:
    Going forward, America, while we spent 4 brutal years hateing the Never Trumpers for allowing Biden to flush our once Great Nation down the stinky toilet of world-wide ridicule. We will spend the next 4 years thanking The Never Trumpers for giving us Desantis.
    In conclusion:
    All Patriots are hereby ordered to cease and dissist from their hate of the Never Trumpers and (I know it will be hard) start loving Those Same Never Trumpers as they will deliver Desantis to The White House.
    Oh one more thing:
    There’s not a _amn thing the left can do to stop it. Go ahead and carve it in stone America. See all those other polling companies had no clue on how to poll The Never Trumpers. Thanks to me, Earl Pitts American, a greatfull nation begins the soothing, healing process, of relaxing their “Political Sphincters” …. Ahhhhhh …. the sound of millions of Patriots relaxing their “Political Sphincters” Nation-Wide.

    • Ned Beatty

      September 30, 2023 at 8:07 am

      Nobody cares.

      • Michael K

        September 30, 2023 at 8:25 am

        Whatever it is, its’ grammar, syntax and punctuation suggest it’s a troll. And yes, nobody cares.

      • Earl Pitts American

        September 30, 2023 at 8:36 am

        Thanks Ned,
        Please let me, Earl Pitts American, know if you are interested in applying for a position as one of my “Wackey Leftist Contarian Commenters”.
        We will put you in an intensive training program so you will be comfortable in making me, Earl Pitts American, look good to our beloved fans by having you chime in with “wackey leftist comments” and at the same time making your boss, Earl Pitts American, look a lot more intelegent, wise, and “all knowing” than I really am.
        My Man Nedster, this is how online SuperStars are made and maintained in today’s “it’s true because The Internet said so world”. Join us Nedster!!!!!

    • Beverly Brevity

      September 30, 2023 at 1:53 pm

      Diarrhea soup, Earl. Too many words, not gonna read’m.

    • Mervyn Hinton

      September 30, 2023 at 6:26 pm

      ” spent 4 brutal years hating the Never Trumpers for allowing Biden to flush our once Great Nation down the stinky toilet of world-wide ridicule”
      With respect, from a European perspective, the US was almost ‘flushed down the toilet” was actually ridiculed..at Davos, in the UN, in NATO and in the Scottish Parliament. Not by Joe Biden who is a World Class Statesman of immense renown … The useful idiot that Biden replaced in the White House dragged America toward a ‘Trailer Park Trash ‘ status.

      • Earl Pitts "Try A Pair Of Earl's Slippers" American

        October 1, 2023 at 9:28 am

        With all due respect to “Mervin”:
        Many of my, Earl Pitts American Fan Club Members, have the hi-tech “Back-Tracker” device which is being supplied at discounted pricing when you also order some of “Earl’s Pillows, Earl’s Sheets, along with Earl’s Slippers” ™( pat. pending) in the Limited Time “Back-Tracker Value Pack”.
        Anyway I’m having my phone blow up with regards to this above post from “Mervyn” having originated from within the White House in that same cloak room in which that sack of coke was recently found.
        Thank you America,
        Earl Pitts American

        • Mervyn Hinton

          October 1, 2023 at 2:55 pm

          A veritable word salad… No idea who you are but I am forming an opinion as to What you are..
          Your already tenuous grasp of English is not helped by your lack of understanding toward the use of punctuation.
          For clarification I am not American, I live in Europe
          English is my first language, one of several factors that set you and I apart…

  • Michael K

    September 30, 2023 at 8:23 am

    Leave it to the satirists and comedians to expose the truth. Moat telling, Ron cannot dtray from talking points – he simply cannot engage or think on his own two feet.

    • Earl Pitts American

      September 30, 2023 at 8:44 am

      Spelling Mikey,
      It’s OK to call me, your genious boss out for spelling errors, but when your are not activally engaged in a wackey leftist contrairian commentary, cleaverly designed to make me, Earl Pitts “Your Boss” American, look good to our readership we do have a spell-check expectation in place as a condition of your employment.
      Remember Mikey, you represent me, Earl Pitts American, 27/7.
      Thanks Mikey,

      • russell chartier

        September 30, 2023 at 1:24 pm

        I think a genius could probably spell the word genius clown

  • russell chartier

    September 30, 2023 at 12:48 pm

    Or just mention home owners insurance and the fact that he’s doing absolutely everything other than the job we pay him to do!

  • Tom

    September 30, 2023 at 3:25 pm

    I thought he did fairly well actually. I still don’t like him but he seems to have loosened up a bit and can laugh at himself. The smiles didn’t seem as forced as they did a month or two back. He’s still banging on about covid when pretty much everyone else in the country has moved on and he’s stopped saying woke every other word which is a good thing. If trump would suck on the exhaust pipe of a running car for a while and biden would just turn to dust and blow away in the wind, rhonda vs. newsom would be a good match.

  • Tom Palmer

    September 30, 2023 at 7:37 pm

    On a side issue, I didn;t realize Bill Maher did not know that Florida has the most ranch land of any state east of the Mississippi There are a lot of cowboy boots south of I-4

    • My Take

      September 30, 2023 at 10:26 pm

      Florida’s major cattle raising date from Spànish colonial times. Range cattlè.
      Florida used to be the 2nd or 3rd most important cattle state. Now?
      I think it mainly exports calves, not steaks

  • Joe

    October 1, 2023 at 10:40 am

    “Did Tiny D pass the Maher test?”

    Narrator: he did not.

  • Karen

    October 1, 2023 at 12:11 pm

    It was largely a softball interview by Maher, and a restrained DeSantis tried to appear normal and not authoritarian extremist. DeSantis managed to remain low key and deflected Maher’s easy questions. Maher failed to address most of DeSantis extremely partisan and divisive policies such as attacking teachers, public schools, LGBT people, immigrants, enhancing voter restrictions and removing elected official with whom he disagrees.

Comments are closed.


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