Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) confronted a CNN reporter on Monday, asking her if she was going to “give a speech or ask a question” The Daily Caller reported.
The incident occurred when CNN reporter Rosa Flores asked about problems in Florida with the distribution of the COVID vaccine during a press conference for the governor.
“Governor, what has gone wrong with the rollout of the vaccine that we have seen phone lines jammed, web sites crashing and,” Flores began.
DeSantis then began attempting to answer Flores’ question, saying, “A lot of demand and the… ”
Flores interrupted his response, with a continued question, saying, “And, if I could…”
“Are you going to give a speech or ask a question?” DeSantis shot back. “You are giving a speech, and you asked a question. You are going to ask how many questions? You are going to ask three, and they have one,” he said referring to other reporters in the room.
Flores replied, “With all due respect, governor, could I finish any question? And I am going to ask you, what went wrong with the vaccine when we have seen phone lines jammed and websites crashed… ”
DeSantis responded again, “So, you are repeating.” Flores then asked why seniors in some areas were kept waiting overnight to get the vaccine. DeSantis replied that the vaccines were going to Florida hospitals and the most vulnerable on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Following the incident, CNN’s Brianna Keilar called DeSantis “an ass.” DeSantis addressed the confrontation Tuesday on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight.
“You know what, I don’t seek validation by the media,” DeSantis said. “What I seek is supporting the citizens of my state, and I can’t tell you, as this pandemic has worn on, the number of times someone has come up to me with tears in their eyes saying, ‘If it wasn’t for you, my kid would not be in school and I would not have my job.’ That is why I’m in this job.”
DeSantis also gave some insight into why he interrupted Flores. “I think it’s very clear some of these networks obviously, they have agendas. They are not trying to report facts anymore. It’s all about spinning whatever narratives they think can get ratings and that’s just the reality of the situation, so it doesn’t impact me,” he explained.
The governor told Carlson that he wears the negative press he receives for trying to keep the mainstream media in check as a “badge of honor.”