Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has yet to declare he is running for president in 2024, but he has been on a media tour as of late to promote his new book, The Courage to Be Free, that certainly feels like a precursor to an announcement.
A politician who is believed to have aspirations for higher office making the rounds is nothing new, but what has made Gov. DeSantis’ schedule noteworthy is the press he’s chosen to give interviews to. Appearing largely on right-leaning outlets, he did not sit down with the likes of ABC, CBS, or NBC. He also has not come on The Megyn Kelly Show.
On Monday’s program, Megyn revealed that she has extended an invitation to Gov. DeSantis – but he has yet to accept. She reflected on why that may be and also called out those in the media who have seemingly forgotten what the core tenants of their jobs demand.
Why Ron DeSantis Hasn’t Been on The Megyn Kelly Show
In the wake of Gov. DeSantis’ recent media appearances and his upcoming sit down with Piers Morgan, Megyn confirmed that she has been interested in interviewing the governor. “I will say for the record: We asked DeSantis to come on the show,” she shared. “He has not said yes, and I find that very interesting.”
Megyn had a guess as to why the invitation has so far gone unanswered. “I do think there’s a reason for it, and I will venture to say he’s afraid,” she said. “He’s afraid because he knows the kind of interview that I would give him.” As she described it, he is “not going to get a pass” from her, just as former President Donald Trump and any other presidential hopeful would not.
Case in point: The conversation Megyn had with 2020 and 2024 Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson in episode 288. “She also didn’t get a pass, which led to the infamous line of, ‘This is an interview, not a friendship,’” Megyn recalled. “It’s what I had to remind her of when she got upset because I was asking her tough questions.”
In Megyn’s estimation, now is the time for Gov. DeSantis to start getting comfortable with the press because a successful presidential bid is going to require him to be at the top of his game. “Go on adversarial media, and see how you do,” she said. “I don’t hate DeSantis… I call it like I see it – some things about him are good; some things about him, I think, are not so good.”
The Role of Journalists and the Media
The line between ‘journalist’ and ‘pundit’ had been blurring for many years, but the 2016 election between Trump and Hillary Clinton seemed to be the breaking point at which those who had once been relied on to report and deliver facts could no longer be trusted to do so.
As Megyn explained, that does a disservice to the audience. “That’s the way I am with presidential candidates because I represent the viewers, not the candidates,” she said. “That’s the way journalists should be.” Rather than looking to “rub elbows with these guys” and get “in their good graces,” the relationship between reporters and politicians “is supposed to be adversarial,” she added.
No matter who they might support, members of the media are not meant to be buddy-buddy with politicos. “They’re not your friend – your friend is your audience, is the truth,” Megyn noted. “It disgusts me to see the press running cover for [President Joe] Biden, to see the hardcore MAGA group running cover for Trump all the time, to see now the ‘new right’ in love with DeSantis.”
Ultimately, Megyn had some advice for her colleagues in the media. “Stop falling in love with the politicians,” she said. “Your business is not to be loved; it’s to tell the truth.” The end goal: “Respect is what you want, and respect will get you an audience,” she concluded. “Love is for pundits who just want to say the nice sweet nothings that people want to hear.”
You can check out Megyn’s full show by tuning in to episode 516 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.