Vanessa Cárdenas: DeSantis’ “dangerous language and ideas should be viewed through the lens of public safety more than political positioning and horse race maneuvering”
Washington, DC – Ron DeSantis’ relentless effort to define himself as an anti-immigrant hardliner for GOP primary audiences includes his stump speech calls for deadly violence at the border and his continued use of “stone cold dead” as a pledge for combating Mexican drug lords “cutting through the border wall” who try “to run products into this country,” as we’ve highlighted.
Yet DeSantis’ reliance on the phrase and its dangerous implications continues to escalate – including selling a “stone cold dead” t-shirt as part of a campaign fundraising appeal and a new ad that openly calls for violence at the border. The ad, running from the pro-DeSantis Never Back Down PAC on TV across Iowa that began airing this morning, includes assertions touting that DeSantis:
“Intends to allow for deadly force to be used against anybody cutting through the border wall” … and “we have to defend our people” … and “we’re gonna use force and we’re gonna leave them stone cold dead” … and ending with “no excuses, we will get the job done.” (see full ad here).
The following is a statement from Vanessa Cárdenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
“Ron DeSantis is escalating his explicit calls for deadly violence at the border. From ‘invasion’ to ‘deadly force’ to ‘stone cold dead’ to ‘we have to defend our people,’ he is flat-out inciting violence. His dangerous language and ideas should be viewed through the lens of public safety more than political positioning and horse race maneuvering. DeSantis and other Republicans descent into mainstreaming what used to be limited to the fringes of the internet cannot be normalized. The DeSantis campaign is crossing a dangerous threshold with this campaign message and the tens of millions of dollars behind it. Regardless of his prospects in the primary, we cannot tolerate this and he must be held to account.”