Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was involved in a verbal argument with a black man at a news conference who said his policies played a role in the recent deadly hate crime attack.
The exchange took place during the question-and-answer session at a news conference in Jacksonville on Thursday, WJXT reported. A man in the crowd, who said he was a veteran, called out DeSantis, saying his policies led to the incident in which a 21-year-old white gunman opened fire at a Dollar General store, killing three black people in late August.
“I feel like you have adopted policies that hurt people like me,” the man said. “You allowed guns to be put on the streets – against immature and hateful people, which caused the deaths of people murdered a few weeks ago. »
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DeSantis immediately interrupted the man.
“I didn’t allow anything with that,” DeSantis responded as the audience member asked to finish his remarks. “I’m not going to let you accuse me of committing criminal activity. I will not accept this.
He later added: “You can’t come here and blame me for being crazy. This is not appropriate and I will accept it.
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“You allowed people to hunt people like me,” the man continued.
“Oh, that’s absurd,” DeSantis said. “It’s so absurd.”
The man was eventually escorted from the room. The interaction is reminiscent of when DeSantis spoke at a vigil for victims of the “racially motivated” attack and was met. loud boos a crowd.
One attendee told the governor his “policies caused this,” while another man shouted, “These deaths are in your hands.”
DeSantis has been criticized for policies related to his relaxed gun laws and other policies like his “anti-woke” approach to education in the state, which has been widely condemned by black leaders, according to the Associated Press.
“He had an attack, an all-out attack on the black community with his anti-woke policies, which we know very well was nothing more than a whistle to get people to stand up and getting angry at how this just happened. yesterday,” Florida Rep. Angie Nixon told MSNBC in response to the shooting.