Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis refuses to appear on NBC News or MSNBC until one of the network’s hosts apologizes.
According to his press team, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will refrain from appearing on NBC News and MSNBC programs until one of the network’s top reporters retracts a question she asked about the governor’s education policies.
The governor’s press secretary, Bryan Griffin, sent the network an email that read in part, “There will be no consideration of anything related to NBC Universal or its affiliates until and at least Andrea Mitchell corrects the blatant lie she made about the governor.”
To all of the bookers and producers reaching out to our office from @NBCNews and @MSNBC for @GovRonDeSantis to join your shows, this will be the standard response from our office until @mitchellreports apologizes and your track record improves. pic.twitter.com/8kQcLLEVzW
— Bryan Griffin (@BryanDGriffin) February 22, 2023
According to The Hill, the “lie” that the DeSantis camp is protesting is the question Mitchell asked Vice President Kamala Harris last week: “What does Governor Ron DeSantis not know about Black history and the Black experience when he says that slavery and the aftermath of slavery should not be taught to Florida schoolchildren?”
Mitchell did not apologize, but did concede that her questioning was “imprecise.”
Griffin said that DeSantis, who has had a tense and somewhat combative relationship with the media, won’t be agreeing to make future appearances on NBC or its affiliates until they agree to “display a consistent track record of truthful reporting.”
The Stop WOKE Act was signed into law by DeSantis last year, and it forbade the teaching of Critical Race Theory in Florida schools, as well as lessons about history that could lead students to feel personally responsible for a wrong committed against them in the past because of their race, sex, or national origin.
Critics point out the bill unfairly restricts lessons and classes on topics including the Civil War and the Jim Crow era.
Democrats and activists were outraged when DeSantis’ administration rejected the College Board’s new Advanced Placement (AP) African American studies course earlier this year, accusing it of lacking “educational value.”
Topics including Black queer studies, intersectionality, the reparations movement, the Black Lives Matter movement, Black feminist literary thought, and the Black struggle in the twenty-first century were deemed offensive by the DeSantis administration.
The College Board later changed the AP course to reflect many of DeSantis’ criticisms, but claimed that those changes were not the result of the governor’s influence. DeSantis has yet to say whether the amended course will even be accepted by the state.