On Thursday, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried called for a federal investigation into Gov. Ron DeSantis’ vaccine distribution.
The state’s top Democrat is asking the Federal Bureau of Investigation to investigate the Republican governor after the Miami Herald published an article on Wednesday that said a wealthy senior community in the Florida Keys made up of DeSantis donors received COVID-19 vaccines before much of the state
“If this isn’t public corruption, I don’t know what is,” Fried said at a news conference. “I will not stand by and let our vaccines be used as political gain and to go to be auctioned by the highest bidders while so many of our Floridians are suffering.”
Fried’s accusations come after the governor has repeatedly touted his strategy of opening over 25 exclusive senior vaccine pods as recently as Thursday.
“We’re going to continue to do that, we think that’s very effective,” said DeSantis. “I’m not worried about your income bracket. I’m worried about your age bracket because it’s the age, not the income that shows the risk.”
Fried is the second state leader to call for a federal investigation following Congressman Charlie Crist’s push for a Department of Justice investigation last week.
“Our governor, just as the vaccines were being rolled out, he had his best fundraising month since 2018: $2.7 million in February. This is not a coincidence,” said Fried.
Thursday evening, the Governor’s office called the accusation a “manufactured narrative with political motivations.
Fried has not confirmed speculation that she plans to run against DeSantis next year, but she is said to be considering it.
“If this isn’t public corruption, I don’t know what is.”
— FL Agricultural Commissioner @NikkiFried calls on the FBI to investigate Gov. DeSantis’ vaccine favoritism for corruption.
— Poli Alert (@polialertcom) March 4, 2021