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Ron DeSantis Dismisses Racism Charges Behind ‘Monkey This Up’ Remark: ‘Has Zero To Do With Race’

On Wednesday night, Florida gubernatorial candidate Rep. Ron DeSantis (R) responded to the blowback he received about remarks he made about his Democratic opponent Andrew Gillum.

Appearing on Fox News earlier the day, DeSantis was accused of making a racially-charged statement when attacking Gillum’s “socialist” policies, urging Florida voters to not “monkey this up” by ruining the state’s thriving economy and electing his opponent into office.

Sean Hannity, who disclosed to his viewers that he supported DeSantis during the primary, began his interview with the Republican congressman by offering DeSantis a chance to respond to the criticisms.

“Did you in any way or do you in any way think that that was something misstated or racist in any way?” Hannity asked. “Because that’s what they’re implying.”

“It has zero to do with race, Sean. It has everything to do with whether we want Florida to continue to go in a good direction, building off the success or do we want to turn to leftwing, socialist policies, which will absolutely devastate our state?” DeSantis responded. “And here’s the thing, I believe people should be judged based on their ability and character regardless of race. But it’s because of that that I know that socialism won’t work in Florida. It’s not good for any race, color or creed. So this is not about race. This is about ideas and principles. And I’m not going to let the Democrats and Andrew Gillum try to obscure a debate about whether his tax increases, his single-payer healthcare plan, his desire to abolish ICE whether that is something that is acceptable for Florida. I don’t think it is and I don’t care what color you are.”

Watch the clip above, via Fox News.

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