Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis took the opportunity to fire back at Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker during a Friday speech in the latter’s home state.
DeSantis — speaking at a Lincoln Day event for the Peoria and Tazewell County Republican parties — addressed some of Pritzker’s criticism for him during the speech.
“In Illinois, we reject the cruelty he peddles for political gain.”
“DeSantis’ views are not what we call freedom in Illinois. His appearance at the Illinois GOP Lincoln Dinner this week is in direct opposition to everything Abraham Lincoln stood for.”
Pritzker also described DeSantis’ form of governance as “tyranny” in a tweet.
My statement on the GOP’s Lincoln Day Dinner and their decision to invite Ron DeSantis to Illinois: pic.twitter.com/rKOZkVX7R2
— JB Pritzker (@JBPritzker) May 11, 2023
DeSantis pointed out that Pritzker’s own relatives found the freedoms available in Illinois during the coronavirus pandemic insufficient for them in his Friday speech.
Their preferred alternative?
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DeSantis’ state of Florida.
“I’m a little disappointed your governor said I wasn’t welcome in Illinois,” DeSantis said of Pritzker during the Lincoln Day event, according to The State Journal-Register.
“Because I seem to remember when he was locking down this state, he sent his family to live in my state and live in our freedom.”
Pritzker admitted that his own wife and daughter went to Florida before his own statewide stay-at-home order in 2020, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Pritzker’s relatives only returned to Illinois months later.
The Democratic governor refused to answer questions about his family’s whereabouts during the midst of the pandemic, claiming a line of questioning to that effect was “inappropriate and I find it reprehensible.”
DeSantis has pointed out Pritzker’s seeming hypocrisy before, questioning his commitment to coronavirus lockdown policies while his relatives enjoyed the freedoms available in Florida.
DeSantis takes a shot at Pritzker for closing down the state during covid yet Pritzker family members were visiting Florida, which stayed open. pic.twitter.com/dW4EqqlbeK
— Natasha Korecki (@natashakorecki) February 20, 2023
DeSantis is touring midwestern states such as Illinois and Iowa in advance of what many suspect is an upcoming presidential campaign.