An American politician seen as the political heir to the throne of Donald Trump has criticized Australian ‘tyrants’ for their Covid-19 lockdowns – even comparing the country to communist China.
Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis stated that Australia is not a free country with the two largest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, locked in with hundreds of daily infections.
No city in the world has received home orders for longer than Melbourne, which last week surpassed the Argentine capital Buenos Aires’s 234-day lockdown record.
The leader of the US’s third-largest state slammed the country’s strict Covid-19 measures as “dramatically off the rails” when addressing the crowd at an International Boat Builders Expo and Conference in Tampa.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has slammed pending lockdowns in Australia, where cases continue to rise (pictured is Melbourne, which is in its sixth lockdown)
“You guys, look what’s going on in Australia right now,” Governor DeSantis said.
“They maintain, after a year and a half they still maintain lockdowns by the military and that is not a free country.”
“It’s not a free country at all.
“I wonder why we still have the same diplomatic relations as they do. Is Australia now freer than China, communist China?’
‘I do not know. The fact that it’s even a question indicates that something has gone dramatically off track.’
Footage of Mr DeSantis’ speech quickly went viral online, sparking controversy — as Australian soldiers have fought alongside US troops in every US-led conflict since the Korean War of the early 1950s.
‘You are a legend. I wish with all my heart that we had a leader with your clear vision, common sense and principles in the UK,” one wrote.
Others pointed out that Florida has recorded 53,580 Covid deaths out of a population of 21.5 million.
Australia has recorded only 1,256 deaths by comparison, despite a larger population of 25.7 million.
“They’re enforcing, after a year and a half they’re still enforcing lockdowns by the military and that’s not a free country,” Ron DeSantis (pictured) told a crowd in Tampa
“Florida is doing so well that they can criticize others,” one user commented sarcastically.
Australians also weighed in on the online debate.
Our military does not enforce lockdowns. They have no jurisdiction to enforce public health regulations,” one commented.
Nearly 60 percent of Florida’s population is fully vaccinated, slightly more than the national average of 55 percent.
The state has been free from Covid-19 restrictions for more than a year.
The Florida leader is seen as a possible major contender for the US presidential race in 2024.
The governor claimed Australia is not a free country and wondered if those in communist China had more freedoms (pictured a Sydneysider at a vaccination center)
Governor DeSantis has previously apologized for last year’s jailing of Florida in most US states, where he swore never to do it again.
“To even consider doing any kind of closure, frankly, it’s insane,” he said at the time.
Governor DeSantis could be a Republican primary nominee for US president in 2024 with the support of former President Donald Trump.
Most US presidents have been state governors since January 1977: Jimmy Carter (Georgia), Ronald Reagan (California), Bill Clinton (Arkansas), and George W. Bush (Texas).
George Bush, Barack Obama and Joe Biden were senators in Congress, and two of that trio have served two terms as vice presidents.
With Sydney (center in picture) and Melbourne in lockdown, Governor DeSantis has compared Australia to China
Florida, a traditional battleground state, voted Donald Trump in 2020. For the first time since 1960, both Florida and Ohio, another battlefield state, voted for the losing presidential candidate.
The Sunshine State rarely votes for the loser, but it last did in 1992 when it backed George Herbert Walker Bush over Bill Clinton and in 1960 when it backed Richard Nixon over John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
In 2000, the state voted for George W. Bush over Al Gore by 537 votes.
Governor Ron DeSantis’ (pictured) views on Australia have divided the internet