Ron DeSantis Can Also Too Bribe Voters With Joe Biden's Socialist Commie Dollars!
Bribing voters is BAD! That's what Republicans say whenever Democrats do anything that helps Americans who aren't billionaires. Mitt Romney, who whined that Barack Obama had "bribed" voters with affordable health care access and control of their own bodies, accused President Joe Biden of "bribing" voters with student loan debt forgiveness. This is not how bribes actually work, as the debt forgiveness is available to (just about) everyone without strings attached. You can more correctly argue that lobbyists bribe politicians because they stop writing checks if they don't get their way.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis similarly condemned Biden's debt forgiveness plan. This tracks because he's been on a tear against college in general. He's a product of both Harvard and Yale, so he's hardly a glowing testimonial for higher educator. However, his position seems a tad hypocritical.
At a recent conservative "think tank" event, DeSantis mocked all those woke college students with their worthless degrees. The strawman major he came up with wasn't basket weaving or lesbian dance theory but "zombie studies," which at least has a practical application if you consider the direction our society is heading. The news today feels like the opening of The Omega Man.
DESANTIS: You're not any worse than anybody else because you didn't get a four-year degree.
What a touching sentiment from the Ivy League graduate. I don't support the monarchy, but if Charles insisted the institution wasn't for everybody while literally king himself, I might not trust his motives.
DESANTIS: Think of all the people that had four-year degree in zombie studies with a $100,000 in debt, and then they end up in a job they could've had out of high school.
The audience ate this up. However, when DeSantis joined an open letter with some other Republican governors attacking student debt relief, they argued that Biden's "plan rewards the rich and punishes the poor," which obviously is something no Republican wants! Yet, they simultaneously argue that most Americans with student loan debts are a bunch of losers who can only weave baskets for minimum wage or explain the plot lines from The Walking Dead. It's almost like they're dishonest.
The wage gap between college and high school graduates hit a record this year. According to new data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, "the median annual wage for a full-time worker ages 22 to 27 with a high school diploma is $30,000. For a full-time worker with a bachelor's degree, it's $52,000." Not all college graduates are wealthy, and Republicans are straight-up lying when they claim that Flo at Mel's diner is paying for debt relief. The lowest-earning college degrees don't include made-up junk degrees but rather early education, and there's a literal nationwide teacher shortage.
I actually don't disagree with DeSantis when he says we shouldn't "shoehorn every single student that comes through our school system into traditional four-year universities. They need to know there's a variety of paths you can do and find what's best for you." However, it's not as if Republicans are helping create a world where this is possible. Most voted against Biden's infrastructure bills, which will generate more well-paying jobs in fields that don't require a college degree.
Here's where we cleverly circle back to politicians "bribing" voters. Monday, DeSantis held a press conference where he handed out $1,000 checks to individual cops and firefighters like a fascist Oprah Winfrey. He calls his bribe a "token of appreciation" so that changes everything.
\u201c@DavidblogerICBW @patriottakes Can\u2019t shame the shameless but I\u2019ll try. Here\u2019s Ron DeSantis handing out a bunch of big checks taking credit for Biden\u2019s infrastructure bill.\u201d— PatriotTakes \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8 (@PatriotTakes \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8) 1662814802
This isn't state money, either. As people who pay attention quickly pointed out, DeSantis is using money from the American Rescue Plan to play selective Santa Claus. Biden and congressional Democrats provided more than $8.8 billion in federal dollars to the state of Florida. Republicans collectively voted against the bill but are shamelessly taking credit for its significant benefits. DeSantis brags about the $1,000 checks in a re-election ad but naturally doesn't mention that Biden's responsible.
The wannabe despot should bribe voters with his own money. I thought that's what they taught you at Harvard and Yale.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."