Gov Hochul slammed for tone-deaf potshot over NY Jews fleeing to Florida as she’s seethes at DeSantis

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, is facing criticism for using a speech ostensibly about combatting antisemitism and teaching the Holocaust to take an impolite “potshot” at Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican.

Speaking at a briefing on Wednesday specifically about an antisemitism and pro-Holocaust education-themed bill she was about to sign, the governor suddenly went off track to talk trash about DeSantis and the state he represents.

“I just want to say to the 1.77 million Jews who call New York home: Thank you for calling New York home. Don’t go anywhere or to another state. Florida is overrated. I shouldn’t say this, but look at the governor. It starts at the top down,” she said.

“Getting in trouble – gotta stay on script,” she added, before returning to the topic at hand.

Listen:

The remarks prompted immediate pushback, including from one of the politicians challenging her in the upcoming New York gubernatorial race.

“Can Kathy Hochul really be this totally out to lunch and clueless about why New York leads the entire nation in population loss?” Rep. Lee Zeldin, a candidate in the upcoming race, said in a statement to the New York Post.

“Hochul’s glib smugness aside, it’s no joke that residents of her state are fleeing to the one DeSantis runs. Who gets the last laugh?” Peter Warren of the Empire Center for Public Policy added in a tweet.

Hochul also got pushback from the public.

Look:

This is not the first time Hochul has attacked DeSantis.

In April, she slammed him for “smiling” while signing a widely supported 15-week abortion ban. A month earlier, she called it “absolutely reprehensible and dangerous” when the Florida Legislature passed the abortion ban and the governor signaled that he was prepared to sign it.

“In New York, we will always protect access to safe reproductive health care,” she wrote in a tweet at the time.

And how exactly has that been going for her?

According to the Post, an ongoing exodus from New York to Florida has only further accelerated this year, despite the state no longer being mired in COVID restrictions.

“New York has fully reopened after the strict restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic — but migration from the Empire State to Florida has accelerated this year, according to new data,” the Post reported in May.

“A total of 21,546 New Yorkers swapped their driver’s licenses for the Sunshine State version during the first four months of this year — a 12% increase from the same period in 2021. The 2022 totals are 55% higher than the first four months of the last pre-pandemic year of 2019.”

Everybody appears to be jettisoning New York, including Jews. During a reelection debate on Wednesday, Jewish New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler warned that if he’s voted out of office, New York will boast no more Jewish House members.

“When I was elected to Congress in 1992, there were eight Jewish members from New York. There is now only one. If I’m not re-elected the Jewish community will be the largest — the only large community — without representation,” he said, according to the Post.

The irony is that Florida has plenty of Jewish House members, including Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Lois Frankel, and Ted Deutsch.

Another bit of irony is that many New Yorkers appear to wish Hochul would stop talking trash about DeSantis and instead start following his lead.

For instance, the Post’s editorial board ran an op-ed just a week ago begging her to “follow DeSantis’ lead and ax ‘unprosecutor’ Alvin Bragg.”

“‘This is the law of the land in the state of New York, and it is our full expectation that it will be applied,’ Gov. Kathy Hochul said Wednesday. ‘Every element of the entire criminal-justice system needs to be working collaboratively.’ If she means it, she’ll at long last suspend Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who still refuses to apply New York law and regularly works at cross-purposes with the NYPD,” the board wrote.

“Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis just did something similar, suspending Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren from office for pledging not to enforce state laws,” they continued. “Warren, like Bragg, is a George Soros-backed ‘un-prosecutor.’ … Fine, Hochul’s Wednesday remarks mainly fingered judges, not DAs, for excessive leniency. But it’s still just empty tough talk unless she walks the walk. Are you for public safety or not, Gov?”

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Vivek Saxena

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