Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently fired back at MSNBC and a Miami Herald article for pushing a smear campaign that he had covered uprising COVID-19 deaths in his state. The articles have accused the “MAGA governor” of engaging in a COVID-19 scandal on the death count data. Mind you, the only people getting caught “botching” up the COVID data has been liberal media outlets, Democratic politicians, and other DeSantis critics.
MSNBC’s Chief Legal Correspondent Ari Melber accused DeSantis of misleading the public and downplaying the crisis with a coverup. She said the governor was trying to hide “how badly” he has failed Florida by creating an artificial decline.
A Miami Herald article reports that cases “ballooned” in August and forced the Florida Department of Health to “change the way” it reports death data, giving the appearance of a pandemic in decline. It pulls quotes from multiple critics who accused the governor of orchestrating the coverup with the health department in his state. But DeSantis has been hammering the mainstream media for their double standards and political bias. The article in question was not regarding the change of COVID-19 death numbers, but how the numbers are recorded. The health department had reworked its agency to tally COVID-19 deaths by the date the people died rather than the date the deaths were reported.
DeSantis said they’ve been reporting the way many other states do and that it is the most accurate way to count the fatalities. Other states using this new reporting method include New York City, Puerto Rico, Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Texas. How can the Miami Herald call the data collecting a “cover-up” when they are following the same set of procedures as New York City.
Desantis called out the mainstream media for attacking his state while maintaining pathetic coverage of the New York nursing home death scandal under former governor Andrew Cuomo. Since taking office, Cuomo’s successor, Gov. Kathy Hochul, reported an additional 12,000 to the originally reported COVID-19 death numbers.
“It’s just a totally false, partisan narrative. We are working hard to bring the admissions down in hospitals and the emergency rooms and the hospital census. This is helping to do that,” DeSantis said.
The Miami Herald article, itself, even contains a quote from an expert defending the changes DeSantis and the Florida health department made. University of South Florida epidemiologist Jason Salemi shared that the death by date of death curve is the “most accurate” you can get. He explained that knowing exactly when people died helps construct the curve of the surges we are experiencing in terms of death.
Both sets of data are still publicly available and people can see the deaths by reporting the date or date of death. It’s less of a cover-up and more of an accurate adjustment to how the data is collected.
Journalists just can’t decide on what to think when it comes to health data reporting. It’s less about pushing the false narrative that Florida is participating in a COVID-19 coverup and more about the fact that DeSantis might be a threat to the Biden-Harris administration come 2024. The polls reveal that.