Republican Judge Delivers Devastating Blow To Ron DeSantis

Florida governor Ron DeSantis was smacked down by a Republican-appointed judge this week, when the judge ruled that DeSantis was NOT following Florida’s open records laws by withholding information about the migrant flights that his office arranged. The judge has now given DeSantis 20 days to make the records public, while DeSantis had been hoping to hold tight to the information until December. Farron Cousins explains what this new ruling means.

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*This transcript was auto-generated. Please excuse any typos. Florida’s Republican governor Ron DeSantis suffered a major blow this week in a court from a Republican appointed judge by the name of l Lee Marsh. And Judge Marsh told Ron DeSantis in his entire administration that you guys are actually violating Florida’s open records laws by not releasing all of the information that you have about those migrant flights that you’ve been paying for This judge, Mr. Marsh, Judge Marsh was appointed by former Republican governor Rick Scott, so is a right wing judge. And even the judge was like, Y’all can’t do this. You cannot hide this information. They have been hit, by the way, with multiple different open records requests from news organizations, from immigration rights groups, from all sorts of people throughout the country. And Ron DeSantis administration has said like, Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. We’ll release it. We’ll give you the information, but we have a very small staff, so maybe we’ll try to get it to you by December, you know, after the midterms.

Of course, Judge Marsha’s ruling says that it has to be turned over within the next 20 days, and the midterms are less than 20 days away. So it’s very unlikely that the DeSantis administration is going to give us this information before the midterms hit because they know it’s going to be very bad because some of the information that has remained hidden are communications, of course, with DeSantis chief of staff arranging the actual flights. Now they’ve actually released a little bit of it. So that’s how we know that there are, there’s more to that. But yes, it has now been confirmed, of course, that DeSantis administration did arrange this, not the DeSantis campaign, the actual administration of this corrupt Republican governor. And if you think the ruling is bad, that you should hear what actually happened in court because DeSantis general counsel started arguing with the judge after he issued the decision.

Let me read this from Politico. During the hour long hearing on Tuesday, Andrew King, assistant general counsel for DeSantis argued that the center, the group that filed the Opens record lawsuit was quote, weaponizing the public records law so they can jump everyone else. King also revealed during the hearing that Ute Meyer, who is uh, DeSantis chief of staff, uh, has no phone logs. And even if he did, it would not be a public record. The governor’s office previously released text messages between T Meyer and Larry Keef. DeSantis Safe are that showed the two officials were coordinating the flights. Nick Mes, Deputy General counsel for DeSantis, tried to argue with Judge Marsh after the judge rendered

His, his decision from the bench mes contended the decision would create a precedent and would require the administration to play favorites with how it responds to public records request. Judge Marsh countered he was constrained by the law and that the administration had failed to turn over records citing, for example, that the administration had blocked out the names of who, those who signed waivers to get on a plane. Attorneys for DeSantis contended that they withheld that information because of the ongoing federal lawsuit where a Massachusetts judge is allowing the names of the migrants who filed the lawsuit to remain confidential. But upon questioning from Judge Marsh, they acknowledged Florida has not been told to keep that information confidential. So the reason this is important, right? This little argument with the judge that took place after the ruling came out is because DeSantis people said, Okay, we’ll release it, but you know, we’ve blacked out all the names.

The judge said, Who the hell told you to do that with? The Massachusetts judge said they’re not releasing them, so we’re not releasing them. Cool. Did he tell you you can’t release them? No. Okay, so you’re not under court order to not release them, un redact the names and get this crap out here in the next 20 days. Again, this is a Republican judge, but the reason they want the names blacked out, of course, is so the media cannot reach out to these people, get interviews with them and let them tell the story about how they were duped to get on Ron DeSantis flights.

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