An online political attack ad targeting Florida Governor Ron DeSantis appears to have resulted in more people wanting to vote for him.
The ad, put out by the political action committee “Remove Ron,” sought to blame the popular Republican for every COVID-19 death in the state, and labeled him “DeathSantis,” but most viewers reacted favorably to the governor portrayed in the ad.
The Purge-themed video begins with an airplane full of masked passengers making its final descent to a Florida airport. As an ominous musical score attempts to build up fear and dread in the viewer, the flight attendant plays a short clip of Gov. DeSantis delivering a message on COVID-19.
“We are not doing any vaccine passports in the state of Florida,” DeSantis says with his typical laid-back delivery. “We trust people to make their own decisions,” he adds. Suddenly, as clips of the Capitol riot inexplicably flash across the screen and the music becomes more menacing, DeSantis is heard saying “we will not be bludgeoning people with restrictions, with mandates, with lockdowns, or any of that stuff.”
Then the flight attendant announces that the passengers are not required to get a vaccine, and that mask and vaccine mandates are against the law. As the passengers react with shocked horror, she adds, “You have the right to infect whoever you want whenever with COVID-19.
For the video’s climax, newspaper headlines—”Terrifyingly Evil,” “Your worst Fears Coming True,” and “a Dark Dystopian Story”—flash across the screen, and the governor declares: “If you are trying to lock people down, I’m going to stand in your way.”
Stop what you are doing and watch this immediately. If you are ready to remove Ron DeathSantis from office retweet this new ad and make sure everyone can see it. pic.twitter.com/AyaHQ77fqs
— Remove Ron (@RemoveRon) September 29, 2021
Rather than hurting the Florida governor’s reelection prospects, folks on Twitter found the attack ad to be quite helpful, not to mention unintentionally hilarious.
RD: I think you’re able to make your own decisions. I don’t want to trample on your rights.
— a thing (@AThing12345) September 30, 2021
The ad, which was posted at 6:09 PM on Wednesday, had 4.3 thousand comments by Thursday morning. The vast majority were along these lines:
• For all that’s holy, he should be running for President. Even ads against him make me want to vote for him.
• Great ad for his re-election. He did a far better job than Cuomo did without wrecking the economy. He has had a better outcome overall.
• Florida looks like it’s being governed with sanity. Weird ads like this aren’t actually projecting the message you think. This ad comes off like you want a totalitarian state. Actually, I think you do want that. In other words, this ad says a lot more about you than Desantis.
• If you’re trying to get me to like Ron DeSantis even more, you succeeded.
• could there be anything more un-American than letting people make their own decisions?
• Best pro-Florida ad ever! It’s $4500 for a UHaul truck and Trailer from CLE to JAX. It would be worth it to move back. I’d probably save that in natural gas prices this winter.
• Talk about your all time backfires. This is the perfect move to Florida ad. It should be playing around the clock in NY, CA, NJ and all the other lockdown states. I would run this in Australia!
• I didnt know it was possible but i like Desantis even more after that Ad!
• Honestly… I kinda wonder if the RNC made this on the downlow as some sort of reverse psychology 3D chess move.
• “Freedom is evil”- 2021 lib
• This ad actually makes me like the person they want me to hate. I’m sharing it with everyone now…it’s hilarious.
• Yeah, like holy crap the guy is saying live your life, be free, you choose…how dare him!
• This ad has me ready to pack up and head south
• They chose the most sensible quotes from DeSantis to make him look like a monster!?
Remove Ron’s donation platform is ActBlue, a nonprofit technology organization established in June 2004 to help left-leaning nonprofits, Democrat candidates, and progressive groups to raise money from individual donors on the Internet.