Florida Governor Ron DeSantis criticized Donald Trump on Thursday, accusing him of handing over control to Dr. Anthony Fauci during the COVID-19 crisis and destroying "millions of lives."
What Happened: DeSantis told radio host Glenn Beck, "I think he did great for three years, but when he turned the country over to Fauci in March of 2020, that destroyed millions of people's lives."
"And in Florida, we were one of the few that stood up, cut against the grain, took incoming fire from media, bureaucracy, the left, even a lot of Republicans, had schools open, preserved businesses," the Republican primary candidate added.
Fauci, who was the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) from 1984 to 2022, served under President Trump as one of the lead members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. He was also the former chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden.
DeSantis’ presidential campaign was off to a chaotic start. It began with a Twitter Spaces discussion with billionaire Elon Musk on Wednesday, which was marred by technical glitches, frequent crashes, and audio interruptions due to the overwhelming number of listeners.
While DeSantis is blaming Trump for handling COVID-19, the ex-president has also criticized the Florida governor, claiming he actually "shut down [the] Sunshine State" during the pandemic.
"Florida was actually closed for a great, long period of time," Trump said in February.
"Remember, he closed the beaches and everything else? They're trying to rewrite history."