Fla. Gov. DeSantis denies retaliating against data expert
UPDATED 6:27 PM PT — Wednesday, May 20, 2020
Florida’s governor has refuted the allegations made by an ousted data scientist, who claimed she was retaliated against for not changing virus data to help the state reopen faster.
Governor Ron DeSantis was asked about the claims made by Rebekah Jones on Wednesday. He stated she was fired because she was insubordinate and did not follow the chain of command when inputting case data.
He also noted she’s being investigated for cyber stalking and sexual harassment.
“So first of all, she’s not a data scientist. She’s somebody that’s got a degree in journalism, communication and geography. She is not involved in collating any data, she does not have the expertise to do that. She is not an epidemiologist. She is not the chief architect of our web portal. That is another false statement. What she was doing is she was putting data on the portal, which the scientists didn’t believe was valid data. She didn’t listen to the people who were her superiors, she had many people above her in the chain of command. So she was dismissed because of that and because of a bunch of different reasons about how she did.” – Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) says Rebekah Jones:
-Was not the chief architect of the Florida coronavirus web portal
-Was inputting data that scientists said was not “valid data”
-Is under criminal investigation in Florida pic.twitter.com/gDpZx1qkMJ
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) May 20, 2020
When asked about the Florida’s coronavirus numbers allegedly being manipulated, the governor reaffirmed the state has the most transparent information about the virus. He emphasized any insinuation otherwise is a “partisan narrative trying to be spun.”