There is a reason Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is turning into the Republican Democrats fear the most.
DeSantis keeps taking aim at the biggest sacred cows on the left.
Ron DeSantis is about to team up with Clarence Thomas on the liberal media’s worst nightmare.
DeSantis is preparing to run for president by picking fights with the major institutions on the left and winning.
In the past year DeSantis took on the woke agenda by stripping Disney of its special tax and governing privileges and gutting Diversity, Equity and Inclusion bureaucracies in the state’s colleges.
DeSantis’s identified his next target as the fake news media.
The governor hosted a roundtable event with First Amendment lawyers and victims of fake news media smear campaigns like former Covington Catholic student Nicholas Sandmann.
Liberal media activists smeared Sandmann as a white supremacist when, at the March for Life, Sandmann stood silently and smiled as a radical Native American activist beat a drum in his face.
Because Sandmann was white and wearing a red MAGA hat journalists slimed Sandmann as a racist aggressor even though a full video showed the Native American activist initiated the conversation.
Sandmann could not sue because of the Supreme Court expanding the 1964 New York Times v. Sullivan case — which raised the threshold for public figures to win a libel suit to an outlet needing to knowingly publish a false story — to include ordinary citizens caught up in major news stories as public figures.
DeSantis argued the pendulum swung too far in favor of the press and argued for changes to libel law to make it easier for everyday Americans to sue media outlets.
The Florida governor explained the media was no longer interested in truth or facts but instead saw its chief goal as advancing the narrative of the Democrat Party.
“The idea that they would create narratives that are contrary to discovering facts, I don’t know that was the standard,” DeSantis began. “Now it seems you pursue the narrative, you’re trying to advance the narrative and trying to get the clicks, and the fact checking and contrary facts has just fallen by the wayside.”
DeSantis added that when the corporate media lied about him he could fight back by virtue of his platform as governor.
But average Americans had no such method to clear their name.
“When the media attacks me, I have a platform to fight back. When they attack everyday citizens, these individuals don’t have the adequate recourses to fight back,” DeSantis continued. “It would contribute to an increase in ethics in the media and everything if they knew that if you smeared somebody, it’s false and you didn’t do your homework then you have to be held accountable for that.”
Any laws DeSantis supports to weaken the libel laws would face legal challenge.
But at least two Supreme Court Justices — Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch — would back DeSantis.
Justice Thomas argued the only protection media outlets that spread falsehoods should receive is protection from government censorship.
“The proliferation of falsehoods is, and always has been, a serious matter,” Justice Thomas stated. “Instead of continuing to insulate those who perpetrate lies from traditional remedies like libel suits, we should give them only the protection the First Amendment requires.”
Justice Gorsuch cited the changing media landscape — with its proliferation of outlets — encouraged the spread of lies — such as Donald Trump colluding with Russia — for profit.
“Large numbers of newspapers and periodicals have failed,” Justice Gorsuch wrote. “Network news has lost most of its viewers. With their fall has come the rise of 24-hour cable news and online media platforms that ‘monetize anything that garners clicks.’”
“What started in 1964 with a decision to tolerate the occasional falsehood to ensure robust reporting by a comparative handful of print and broadcast outlets,” Justice Gorsuch added, “has evolved into an ironclad subsidy for the publication of falsehoods by means and on a scale previously unimaginable.”
Democrats depend on the liberal media to lie and smear about conservatives as a matter of political survival.
But in the Trump years the left weaponized the media to attack regular citizens to intimidate them out of supporting Donald Trump.
And Ron DeSantis argued that needs to stop.
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