Florida Republicans fired a shot across the bow at corporate media Saturday by limiting access to an event and when the so-called journalists who were barred entry demonstrated what it means to be a snowflake, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ (R-FL) spokeswoman Christina Pushaw channeled her best Jen Psaki in response.
The Sunshine Summit took place Saturday at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla., where, in addition to hearing from conservative voices like James Golden, Josh Hammer and Clay Travis, attendees observed congressional debates moderated by Mark Levin. In a surprise move, DeSantis joined Levin in moderating, but the biggest surprise was handed to reporters when they discovered America’s governor had made the event invite only.
As the meltdowns began over their lack of access, Pushaw took to Twitter to react with what the Washington Free Beacon’s executive editor Brent Scher called an “A+ comment by DeSantis team on not credentialing lib reporters for its event today.”
This is an A+ comment by DeSantis team on not credentialing lib reporters for its event today https://t.co/ipdZ3CMxaj pic.twitter.com/tV6QYbg7KC
— Brent Scher (@BrentScher) July 23, 2022
“It has come to my attention that some liberal media activists are mad because they aren’t allowed into #SunshineSummit this weekend,” Pushaw wrote. “My message to them is to try crying about it. Then go to kickboxing and have a margarita. And write the same hit piece you were gonna write anyway.”
The jab was a callback to a remark from then-White House press secretary Jen Psaki who had offered up her advice to Democrats unhappy that their agenda wasn’t advancing through Congress while appearing on “The View.” “My advice to everyone out there who is frustrated, sad, angry, p*ssed off, feel those emotions, go to a kickboxing class, have a margarita, do whatever you need to do this weekend, and then wake up on Monday morning, we’ve got to keep fighting.”
DeSantis had previously mocked the White House over this with a message of his own saying, “Having a margarita is well and good, but it is not a cure for Bidenflation.”
Pucker up! Ron DeSantis jabs Jen Psaki on National Margarita Day https://t.co/7oIo44y54n pic.twitter.com/DwM1xkGvt6
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) February 23, 2022
As to the Sunshine Summit, DeSantis made clear his reasoning for limiting the event stating, “I’m not going to have a bunch of left-wing media asking our primary candidates a bunch of gotcha questions.”
DeSantis on why he’s not allowing mainstream media at the summit:
I’m not going to have a bunch of left-wing media asking our primary candidates a bunch of gotcha questions
— Brendon Leslie (@BrendonLeslie) July 23, 2022
DeSantis’ campaign spokesman Dave Abrams told The Daily Wire, “It’s funny that the very reporters who were uninterested in the Sunshine Summit were the same ones huddled in a corner across from the entrance hoping for a peek,” like the Palm Beach Post’s Stephanay Matat, who posted her “view the majority of the day” from outside the event after lamenting, “I’ll be reporting from the outskirts.”
Note: This has been my view the majority of the day pic.twitter.com/QNVf7b65N3
— Stephany Matat (@stephanymatat) July 23, 2022
“When what is arguably the most powerful apparatus in Florida selects you as someone they want covering their fun parties,” Ben Cornack of the Baltimore Banner, formerly of the Miami Herald said, “but doesn’t allow reporters that write things they don’t approve of, it’s time to rethink whether you’re doing your job. My two cents.”
Meanwhile, as reporters shared a list of the credentialed reporters attending the summit-
I asked for the same list and was denied the invite list for today. Prior to the event, was told it was not open to media coverage. https://t.co/Xagn39MrmR
— Stephany Matat (@stephanymatat) July 23, 2022
The Washington Post’s Dave Weigel claimed he was working on a story about campaigns “taking a more hands off approach to legacy media this cycle than before, as seen through some debates,” and, “if there’s a good faith relationship between the press and the people talking, even if the people disagree, having the record is important and having access to the record is important.”
“We aren’t bothered by their tantrums — in fact it validates our presumption that fair coverage was never a thought for them,” Abrams would add.
In fact, Pushaw delighted in the tantrums as she took to Twitter again later on Saturday to point out how one “journalist” had “created a nine-tweet thread to explain how mad he is.”
“They’re still going…Liberal media in Florida doomed itself to irrelevance because these ‘journalists’ make every story about themselves & their delusions of persecution,” she wrote. “People don’t want to read your hand-wringing. It’s now news. Nor is the 500th hit piece on Gov. DeSantis.”
I mean seriously this “journalist” just created a nine-tweet thread to explain how mad he is about the Sunshine Summit not inviting activist liberal p4p blog “Florida Politics.” pic.twitter.com/bvZpNGDieZ
— Christina Pushaw 🐊 🇺🇸 (@ChristinaPushaw) July 23, 2022
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