Gov. DeSantis wants Haiti rescue flight help from feds, Dominicans
Ron DeSantis. Image via AP.

Ron DeSantis
The Governor may need cooperation for his latest taxpayer-funded foreign mission after all.

Gov. Ron DeSantis is looking for federal and international cooperation for his rescue flights from Haiti.

“Part of the thing that’s going to help us is to be able to launch some flights out of the Dominican Republic,” DeSantis said in his latest appearance on “Fox & Friends.”

“So we’re trying to work with the State Department. We’re trying to work with the DR to say, ‘Hey, if we helicopter people over, can we then fly out of there?’ Because I think the airport situation in Haiti is just something that is not necessarily optimal and we want to make sure we can get as many people out as possible.”

The Governor likened getting help from federal agencies for the state’s international mission to “pulling teeth,” a phrasing that may not be persuasive to the Joe Biden administration, whose State Department has its own protocol to bring back people from war-torn areas, which includes billing people for the cost of the flight.

It should be noted that there has been a long-standing travel warning advising people shouldn’t go to Haiti “due to kidnapping, crime, civil unrest, and poor health care infrastructure,” so Florida’s flights are for people who already disregarded the advice of the federal government.

The first flight from Haiti arrived in Sanford Wednesday evening, with 14 total travelers, including some children, back on U.S. soil at 6:25 p.m. DeSantis noted on Wednesday that people being picked up will be on the taxpayers’ dime, so that evacuees won’t be “stuck with the bill.”

He said during a previous Fox News interview that “Christian missionary groups” would be rescued at the expense of Florida taxpayers.

Costs for this operation are undisclosed. These can add up: The Israel flights cost $19 million, as the Tallahassee Democrat reported.

Florida’s “customer-service” approach to returning evacuees includes what the Director of Emergency Management calls “door to door” service. With more than 500 people signed up for Air DeSantis routes in the coming days, it will be interesting to see if the Haiti operation costs less or more than the one in Israel last fall.

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


4 comments

  • rick whitaker

    March 21, 2024 at 10:01 am

    i don’t get it, these foolish fairy tale believing christians were told by our gov. to not go to haiti because it was too dangerous, but went anyway. now they want florida taxpayers, MANY of them not christians and not believers in ancient fairy tales , to pay to bring them home. let churches pay to bring their foolish people back home. why are they not trusting jesus by staying in haiti and doing what jesus wants? god damn hypocrites

  • PeterH

    March 21, 2024 at 11:10 am

    DeSantis’s goal is an attempt to stay relevant on the national stage!

    The Biden administration is not going to duplicate efforts by patronizing the failed leadership of Ron DeSantis!

  • Deborah B. Ryan

    March 22, 2024 at 7:23 am

    You can’t have it both ways. State Department tells people not to go to Haiti and they go anyway and now want the government to rescue them?

  • Dont Say FLA

    March 23, 2024 at 7:29 pm

    Is Rhonda stuck in Haiti? That is THE only reason he should be flapping his gums about rescue flights.

Comments are closed.


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