tags: Press Releases

A Dangerous Incitement to Violence Embedded in Ron DeSantis’ Anti-Immigrant Vision and Rollout

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Zachary Mueller: “Where does this stop? Unfortunately, we’ve already seen where it can lead.”

Washington, DC – Yesterday, Ron DeSantis unveiled his campaign’s immigration plan and gave a speech at the border in Eagle Pass, TX. As we noted, the rollout was explicit in its endorsement of dangerous, white nationalist conspiracies.

DeSantis made the white nationalist slogan “stop the invasion” the centerpiece of his campaign’s immigration rollout despite the legacy of similar rhetoric by shooters in El Paso, Pittsburgh, and Buffalo mass murders. Yet the incitement and calls to violence went even beyond that:

  • The AP captured an exchange at the Eagle Pass event: “DeSantis was supportive of one audience member who suggested that the situation at the border constituted an ‘act of war.’ ‘I think the state of Texas has the right to declare an invasion,’ DeSantis told the man. ‘You’re going to see as president under Article 2 of the Constitution, you have a responsibility and a duty to protect the country. We are going to do that and we are going to do that robustly.’”
  • Meanwhile, as the New York Times highlighted, DeSantis also called for “deadly force” to be used against suspected drug traffickers and those “breaking through border barriers while ‘demonstrating hostile intent,’ saying: “‘Of course you use deadly force … If you drop a couple of these cartel operatives trying to do that, you’re not going to have to worry about that anymore,’” he added. He said they would end up ‘stone-cold dead.’”

According to Zachary Mueller, Political Director at America’s Voice:

“It is hard to overstate the dangerous implications of Ron DeSantis’ approach to immigration. From ‘invasion’ to ‘deadly force’ to ‘stone cold dead’ to ‘act of war’ to ‘a duty to protect the country,’ he is relying on and mainstreaming a collection of phrases and ideas that are flat-out incitements to violence and have been linked to domestic terror attacks by white nationalists. His dangerous language and ideas should be viewed through the lens of public safety more than political positioning and horse race maneuvering. We cannot become numb to this stuff.

Where does this stop? Unfortunately, we’ve already seen where it can lead.”