CORONAVIRUS

Orlando Sentinel Editorial Thirsts After Rival GOP Gov. In Stunning Rebuke Of DeSantis

The newspaper's editorial board slammed Gov. Ron DeSantis as "a lightweight" and contrasted his coronavirus failures with another GOP governor's leadership.

The Orlando Sentinel editorial board sure looks like it wants to swap Florida’s governor for Ohio’s.

In an editorial published Monday, the newspaper compared the “meek, unsure and flippant” way that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has handled the coronavirus pandemic with the “resolute, decisive and serious” tone it said had been struck by Ohio’s Republican Gov. Mike DeWine.

Both “were elected in 2018 to govern swing states. Both are Republicans and have last names starting with ‘De,’” noted the editorial. “Their similarities end when it comes to how the governors of Florida and Ohio have managed the coronavirus in their states.”

The editorial said DeSantis “seems unable to learn from his earlier missteps, which include allowing college spring break to continue at Florida’s beaches and doubting federal warnings that Florida was experiencing community spread of the coronavirus.”

And it described DeSantis, who resisted issuing a statewide stay-at-home order until April 1, as “a lightweight,” “out of his element” and so far “ill-suited to leadership in a time of crisis.” DeWine implemented Ohio’s stay-at-home order on March 23, postponing the state’s primary election a week earlier. 

“People look to their leaders during frightening times. Ohio’s governor is inspiring confidence, Florida’s is not,” the editorial concluded. “It isn’t too late for DeSantis to show he can do better. He could start by following the example of his counterpart in Columbus.” 

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