ICK: PBS Pundit Says ‘DeSantis at Least Partly Responsible’ For Racist Florida Murders

News & Politics

On Monday nights, the PBS NewsHour brings on NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith and political prognosticator Amy Walter. Walter was out for this Monday’s edition, so PBS turned to Errin Haines, editor at large of The 19th news nonprofit, was invited onto of the tax-funded PBS NewsHour to spread disgusting smears of prominent Republican presidential candidate Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida.

First, however, it was Donald Trump’s turn to be smeared as racist, with Haines making an unfounded logical leap, extrapolating from the former president’s election results rejection to assume anti-black racism.

Amna Nawaz: Errin, what about you? How are you looking at it? Are there any states you would be keeping a particularly close eye on to see if that trial or any news that’s come out before it does have any kind of impact?

Haines played the race card when talking about Super Tuesday primary day in early March, a day after Donald Trump’s trial for alleged election interference is scheduled to begin.

Haines: ….you’re looking at states like Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, Virginia, all of whom have significant numbers of black voters. We have to remember that at the center of all of the former president’s legal battles is this scheme that was an attempt to discredit, to disenfranchise black voters as illegitimate participants in our democracy….

Nawaz naturally brought up the booing DeSantis got from black Floridians at a vigil in Jacksonville, Florida, after a racially motivated white man killed three black people.

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Nawaz: Errin, you mentioned Ron DeSantis. He remains in most polls second place to Mr. Trump. I just want to ask you about some news over the weekend. He attended a vigil yesterday in Jacksonville, where, as we know, a white gunman had targeted and killed three black people in another racist shooting in America. This is the reaction Ron DeSantis got at that vigil. Take a listen.

Man: These deaths are on your hands!

Amna Nawaz: Errin, those are clearly boos from that crowd as he walks to the podium. He’s running for president, but this is the reaction he’s getting from fellow Floridians. What does that say to you?

Translation: Let him have it.

In disgusting fashion, Haines held DeSantis “at least partly responsible” for the racist murders for his stands against woke propaganda in state education.

Haines: I think that it says that this is a crowd, this is a state, especially black Floridians, who do hold Governor DeSantis at least partly responsible for what happened in Jacksonville, because you had this incident occurring. And if a child in Florida were to go to school today, this week, and ask, what were the dynamics that contributed to that shooting happening, a teacher might not even really be able to explain to a child, based on the policies that Governor DeSantis has championed. It might be considered “woke” to explain to a child what happened over the weekend.

Florida schoolchildren aren’t forbidden to learn about the murder of Emmett Till, no matter what Haines says for ideological advantage.

Maybe discussing the March on Washington, for example, might be OK, but another anniversary that we’re marking today is the 68th anniversary of Emmett Till being murdered, which is not something that schoolchildren are supposed to learn about, because it makes people uncomfortable….

Haines chided “white women” in a June 2022 MSNBC appearance for not dutifully voting Democrat and for having chosen “gender over party,” an odd argument for someone who works for a gender-obsessed news outlet named after the 19th Amendment, which guaranteed the vote to women.

A transcript is available, click “Expand” to read:

PBS NewsHour

8/28/23

7:33:14 p.m. (ET)

Amna Nawaz: Errin, what about you? How are you looking at it? Are there any states you would be keeping a particularly close eye on to see if that trial or any news that’s come out before it does have any kind of impact?

Errin Haines, Editor at Large, The 19th News: Yes, Amna.

Well, I mean, what I think is that just I certainly agree with Tamara’s point, but I do think that Super Tuesday could also be an opportunity for both Democratic and Republican voters to send a message coming out of what we could call super Monday, if that scheduled, holds with President Trump in a courtroom just the day before this really consequential election.

So, I mean, you’re looking at states like Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, Virginia, all of whom have significant numbers of Black voters. We have to remember that at the center of all of the former president’s legal battles is this the scheme that was an attempt to discredit, to disenfranchise Black voters as illegitimate participants in our democracy.

And so I think that those dynamics could loom over Super Tuesday. You have the former president really saying that he is a victim in all of this, really also trying to get his supporters to align themselves with his legal woes.

And so they could also be looking to send a message of strong support for the former president. He is certainly seeking that at the ballot box with donations, et cetera. So this could galvanize parties — voters in both parties in a number of states that are having primaries that day.

Amna Nawaz: Well, much of that Republican race, we know, and how it develops depends on the rest of the GOP field.

We all know that last week’s debate was really the first chance for a lot of all the candidates who are not Donald Trump to try and break through, to try and break away from the pack.

So we have got some polls now coming out in reaction to that debate. When Republican primary voters were asked who they believe won, here’s who they said in a recent Emerson College poll; 27 percent said Vivek Ramaswamy; 21 percent said Ron DeSantis, 12 percent for Mike Pence, 11 percent for Nikki Haley; 22 percent said no one won the debate.

Tam, what do these numbers tell you about what Republican primary voters are looking for?

Tamara Keith: Right, so no one performed better than Ron DeSantis and everyone except for Vivek Ramaswamy, who did a really good job of drawing attention to himself.

It’s not clear whether he did a really good job of persuading Republican primary voters that they should pick him over Trump, for instance, because that same poll found that 50 percent, I believe, of Republican voters support Trump and want Trump to be the nominee.

So, all of these candidates were up there fighting for relevance, while Trump was stealing — stealing the show by getting a mug shot that his campaign is then selling on shirts, selling with an autograph and, to go back to what Errin was saying, really using this as a powerful tool to get his supporters and Republican voters to rally around him.

Amna Nawaz: Errin, what about that?

Tam raises that crucial point here; 50 percent of those primary voters still say they plan to back Donald Trump, but that is his lowest number to date, and it is a 5 percent drop from before the debate.

What kind of impact do you think not being on that stage had on him?

Errin Haines: I think you saw the impact that it had on that stage, when the majority of the candidates, when asked if they would support former President Trump even if he was convicted of a crime, held their hands high and said that they would absolutely do that.

Listen, I think that what that poll didn’t ask is, of the people who were on stage, who won that debate? Because the person who won that debate was clearly former President Trump. He was mentioned by name several times, but not necessarily in a negative way, people just continuing to show their support for him, their support for certainly policies that are similar to his, even as they tried to maybe distinguish themselves from other people who were on the stage.

And, again, this did not deter any of his voters or persuade them in the direction of any other candidates to any large degree. And his closest contender, Governor DeSantis, really was kind of overshadowed by the likes of Vivek Ramaswamy or even Nikki Haley, who had kind of a breakout night that has given her some momentum coming out of that debate.

And so I would say former President Trump is the one who won that debate and really kind of proved his argument that he doesn’t even need to be on the stage to continue to be impactful and also to continue to hold sway with his base and the Republican Party at large right now in a primary.

Amna Nawaz: Errin, you mentioned Ron DeSantis. He remains in most polls second place to Mr. Trump.

I just want to ask you about some news over the weekend. He attended a vigil yesterday in Jacksonville, where, as we know, a white gunman had targeted and killed three Black people in another racist shooting in America.

This is the reaction Ron DeSantis got at that vigil. Take a listen.

(booing)

Man: These deaths are on your hands!

Amna Nawaz: Errin, those are clearly boos from that crowd as he walks to the podium.

He’s running for president, but this is the reaction he’s getting from fellow Floridians. What does that say to you?

Errin Haines: I think that it says that this is a crowd, this is a state, especially Black Floridians, who do hold Governor DeSantis at least partly responsible for what happened in Jacksonville, because you had this incident occurring.

And if a child in Florida were to go to school today, this week and ask, what were the dynamics that contributed to that shooting happening, a teacher might not even really be able to explain to a child, based on the policies that Governor DeSantis has championed.

It might be considered woke to explain to a child what happened over the weekend. Maybe discussing the March on Washington, for example, might be OK, but another anniversary that we’re marking today is the 68th anniversary of Emmett Till being murdered, which is not something that schoolchildren are supposed to learn about, because it makes people uncomfortable.

But, really, you saw Governor DeSantis, obviously, couldn’t really talk about a looming hurricane coming to the state without also addressing this horrible tragedy that happened in Jacksonville, but yet, at the same time, I think somebody who has been discouraging Floridians and would like to discourage the rest of the country from really learning about the uglier parts of our country’s racist history.

For somebody like that to show up and try to show their support for the community, I think him being met with those boos was not necessarily a surprising reaction for folks who have been following really the racial tension around a lot of the rhetoric and policy that he’s been espousing down there.

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