Florida Dem Accuses 60 Minutes of Airing ‘Bullsh*t’ DeSantis-Publix Story Without Including His Comments
Florida’s State Emergency Management Director, Jared Moskowitz, is slamming CBS for not taking his comments for 60 Minutes’ highly-criticized report on Governor Ron DeSantis (R).
The news show has been facing major backlash for airing a package with the insinuation that DeSantis gave Publix exclusive rights to administer coronavirus vaccines to people after the supermarket chain donated to his political campaign. The controversy revolves around the fact that DeSantis responded to the pay-for-play charge, but 60 Minutes omitted the part of his answer where he explained that Publix offered to take the initiative on the vaccine rollout, and they were well positioned to vaccinate most of Florida’s elderly residents.
The show received bipartisan condemnation for leaving out DeSantis’ full remarks, though 60 Minutes defended itself in a statement claiming DeSantis declined to be interviewed for the segment. The show also said “we spoke to State Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz twice, but he declined to be interviewed on camera for our story until well after our deadline.”
Moskowitz is among the Democrats who’ve slammed 60 Minutes over the DeSantis piece, and he offered this rebuke for their latest statement:
I did speak with 60 Minutes. Never said I didn’t. They were very nice, but I told them that the Publix story was “bullshit”. Walked them through the whole process.The fact that I didn’t sit down on “camera” because I am responding to a 100 year emergency doesn’t change the truth
I did speak with @60Minutes. Never said I didn’t. They were very nice, but I told them that the @publix story was “bullshit”. Walked them through the whole process.The fact that I didn’t sit down on “camera” because I am responding to a 100 year emergency doesn’t change the truth https://t.co/G7QNsV42V5
— Jared MASKowitz 😷 (@JaredEMoskowitz) April 6, 2021
Fox News has a report out on email exchanges between 60 Minutes associate producer Emily Gordon and DeSantis’ office. DeSantis communications staffer Meredith Beatrice requested that the network give her more time to respond to their questions, but 60 Minutes appeared to ignore the request and when they told Beatrice the package was nearing its deadline.
Beatrice reportedly called 60 Minutes to try setting them up for an interview with Moskowitz, but the network claimed they “repeatedly” asked him for an interview and didn’t hear back from him for weeks. DeSantis’ office repeatedly urged them to speak with Moskowitz and other Democrat officials, but eventually they were told “Thank you for your input. Unfortunately, the deadline has passed…Luckily, we have already spoken to Director Moskowitz several times. We appreciate his perspective on the roll out in Florida. We have included the information he provided on background as it pertains to this story.”
Fox reached out to Moskowitz for comment, and he accused 60 Minutes of completely disregarding his perspective despite their claims to the contrary.
Did you see the perspective that the person in charge of the Covid response told them how Publix was selected in their agency and that the contribution story was garbage? They ran with pay to play, when I told them it was done by my agency and why and how. Did you see that perspective?
CBS News, in a statement Tuesday, vigorously defended the 60 Minutes report:
When Florida state data revealed people of color were vaccinated at a much lower rate than their wealthier neighbors, 60 MINUTES reported the facts surrounding the vaccine’s rollout, which is controlled by the governor. We requested and conducted interviews with dozens of sources and authorities involved. We requested an interview with Gov. Ron DeSantis, he declined; We spoke to State Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz twice, but he declined to be interviewed on camera for our story until well after our deadline. The idea we ignored their perspective is untrue. Counter to his statement yesterday, we also spoke on the record with Palm Beach County Mayor David Kerner. For over 50 years, the facts reported by 60 MINUTES have often stirred debate and prompted strong reactions. Our story Sunday night speaks for itself.
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