GOP nominee for Florida governor Rep. Ron “Monkey This Up” DeSantis has spoken at least four times at conferences led by David Horowitz, who The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) calls “a driving force of the anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant and anti-Black movements.”
Ron “Monkey This Up” DeSantis said on Fox News Aug. 29 when talking about Andrew Gillum, who is Black, winning the Democratic nomination, “The last thing we need to do is to monkey this up by trying to embrace a socialist agenda.”
A report published by The Washington Post on Sunday confirms that DeSantis was a guest speaker at David Horowitz Freedom Center conferences in Palm Beach, Fla., and Charleston, S.C., in 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017.
His expenses for the 2017 conference at a luxury resort in Palm Beach were covered by the Freedom Center, according to disclosure forms he filed as a member of Congress, the Post reports.
Horowitz has reportedly claimed that Blacks owe their freedom to white people, and that the only real American race war is against white people.
“I just want to say what an honor it’s been to be here to speak,” DeSantis said in his 2015 appearance.
“David has done such great work and I’ve been an admirer. I’ve been to these conferences in the past but I’ve been a big admirer of an organization that shoots straight, tells the American people the truth and is standing up for the right thing.”
Horowitz founded the Center for the Study of Popular Culture in 1988.
In 2006, it was rebranded as the David Horowitz Freedom Center, launching “a network of projects giving anti-Muslim voices and radical ideologies a platform to project hate and misinformation,” according to SPLC.
Besides Ron “Monkey This Up” DeSantis, polarizing white nationalists have also spoken at David Horowitz Freedom Center events, including Steve Bannon, Milo Yiannopoulos and Sebastian Gorka.
Last week, Bannon was removed as the headline speaker of The New Yorker Festival’s 19th edition after backlash.
President Trump backs Ron “Monkey This Up” DeSantis in the Florida gubernatorial race.
Regarding his participation in David Horowitz Freedom Center events, a spokeswoman for the congressman told The Washington Post that the candidate does not “buy into this ‘six degrees of Kevin Bacon’ notion that he is responsible for the views and speeches of others.”