Maher Slams ‘Despicable’ NYT COVID ‘Hit Piece’ On DeSantis: ‘You Did Handle It Better. You Were Right’
Liberal HBO host Bill Maher defended Florida Governor Ron DeSantis during an interview this week over a “despicable” hit piece that The New York Times wrote about how he managed the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
DeSantis appeared on “Real Time” with Maher Friday evening where the two talked about DeSantis’ record and his Republican presidential campaign.
“I’m fed up with woke, too,” Maher said. “That’s why I have trouble with friends in Hollywood. I’m an old school liberal, and that’s a whole different thing than woke. And I’m sympathetic to you because, you know, you very often, like, take on an issue where I feel like, yeah, there is crazy stuff going on in schools. There is crazy stuff.”
Maher mentioned, though, that the problem is that some people do not understand why it was important to take on Disney or fight wokeness in schools because they don’t actually see what is going on.
“This idea of ideology corrupting institutions, I see it in Los Angeles with the amount of crime that’s here and the homelessness,” DeSantis said. “There are people that commit crimes who are not prosecuted like they would be in Florida. Our state’s crime rate is at a 50-year low. You elect these people like Gascón and what they did in San Francisco. You can break into somebody’s house or mug somebody, and you don’t end up going to jail?”
“That doesn’t work, but that’s driven by ideology,” he continued. “So it’s not just we’re having just a philosophical debate. I think woke ideology has corrupted institutions. I think it’s corrupted things like the CDC with how they handled COVID with the nonsense that they did. So it’s a broader issue than just a philosophical fight.”
After DeSantis brought up how he fought against heavy-handed government restrictions during COVID, Maher responded, “You keep wanting to get back to that and I don’t blame you because you’re right.”
“We’re on the same page there. And I think it’s unfair what they did to you because you did handle it better,” Maher continued. “You did handle it better. You were right. You were like, let’s target the people, protect the people who are most vulnerable, and everybody else can go on with their lives a little better. You opened schools sooner. And a lot of the stuff that’s come in, the information we have after now we’ve had a few years to look at it, you were more right, and they won’t give you credit with it.”
Maher then specifically highlighted The New York Times’ coverage. “I saw The New York Times with such a despicable hit piece on you … I forget what the lead headline was, but it was basically Ron DeSantis f***ed up the pandemic,” he said. “And then like, at the very end, it says Florida’s death rate, overall, is better than the national average. And if you’re going to do an article about Florida and the pandemic, shouldn’t that be the lead? Shouldn’t that be the headline — I mean, talk about burying the lead.”
DeSantis said that if he is elected president, he will “bring accountability” so that the government overreach that happened during the pandemic “never happens in our country again.”
DeSantis: “If we did so bad, people would have been leaving FL. People are coming, wealth's moving into the state, our economy's done better than any other large state, and education — we're now ranked, I think, in the top 5 on most metrics in education”pic.twitter.com/OUxQTRmEIU
— John Hasson (@SonofHas) September 30, 2023