“He’s someone who can absorb a lot of information,” Moskowitz said. “He is very bright.”
As for the view of some Democrats that DeSantis’ response to the pandemic provides a political opportunity to attack the governor for causing needless deaths, Covid-19 has so far killed more than 83,000 people in Florida. Kills people, third most than any state. Its population ranking — Moskowitz is skeptical.
“It may be true that the reopening of society has resulted in more deaths, but that doesn’t mean people didn’t want it.”
But Moskowitz objected when I asked him about DeSantis’ recent calls to investigate vaccine manufacturers’ alleged downplay of potential health side effects. .
“I can’t speak for him on this one, because obviously I’m not there anymore,” Moskowitz said. “So I don’t know what he’s looking at or what he’s thinking. I think Florida should be proud of its vaccination program.”
“I have to admit that Florida is a red state.”
Underlying Moskowitz’s caution is the fact that Florida, along with New York, was the state in which the Republicans showed the strongest results in the 2022 election.
For the first time since Reconstruction, there are no Democrats in Florida’s statewide office. The House delegation has shrunk from his nine Democratic seats to his eight out of a total of 28 seats. DeSantis briefly dispatched former Republican Governor-turned-Democrat Congressman Charlie Christo. Senator Marco Rubio defeated Congressman Val Demings by a similar margin.
In November, Moskowitz defeated pro-Trump entrepreneur Joe Budd by just five points. The district includes Broward County, home to a diverse Democratic Party, and parts of wealthy Palm Beach County to the north. In the 2018 gubernatorial race, Andrew Gillum defeated DeSantis in Broward County by his 37 points margin, while Palm in his Beach County he won by 17 points. Four years later, DeSantis narrowed his losing margin at Broward to his 15 points and won at Palm Beach by his 3 margin. It was the first time since 1986 that a Republican won the county.