Fried ramps up campaign rhetoric, calls DeSantis an “authoritarian dictator”

by | May 6, 2021

It didn’t take long for Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried to shift into campaign mode after Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law a controversial elections bill.

Facing criticism from outlets for giving Fox News an exclusive event at the Airport Hilton in West Palm Beach, DeSantis signed an elections integrity measure (SB 90) on Thursday that many claims suppress voter turnout. The law increases restrictions on drop boxes, requires voters to sign up for mail-in ballots every year, and limits who can drop off ballots at drop boxes.

“Florida took action this legislative session to increase transparency and strengthen the security of our elections,” said DeSantis. “Floridians can rest assured that our state will remain a leader in ballot integrity. Elections should be free and fair, and these changes will ensure this continues to be the case in the Sunshine State.”

The new voting law, however, is facing immediate legal challenges.

The move drew swift backlash as a coalition, including the League of Women Voters of Florida and the Black Voters Matter Fund, announced a lawsuit within minutes of the signing. Another lawsuit filed by the NAACP labeled the new law as “the latest in a long line of voter suppression laws targeting Florida’s Black voters, Latino voters, and voters with disabilities.”

The signing was also lambasted by DeSantis’ most vocal opponent. Fried, an outspoken critic of DeSantis, called him an “authoritarian dictator” during a press conference at the Capitol, likening his use of Fox News to state TV used by communist regimes.

“He did this in a closed location with only political supporters, using our taxpayers’ dollars with the only camera watching was Fox News,” Fried told reporters following the bill signing. “He is using Fox News as a state news source. We see this in other locations across the world — China, Venezuela.”

“So are the Republicans afraid of taking their message to the people?” Fried continued. “Because the only way they’ve been able to win elections is through lies, misinformation, fraud, and now voter suppression. But I can tell you the people of the state of Florida will not be suppressed, their voices will not be shut down. They will rise up. They will see Ron DeSantis for who he is, and that is an authoritarian dictator who is borderline fascism that we are seeing here in the state of Florida.”

Following her press conference, the lone statewide Democrat released a video on Twitter, promising to do something about. Fried is expected to run for governor in 2022.


  1. Anonymous

    Ron Desantis best governor in the United states. Keep the State America. vote RED

  2. Anonymous

    Nikki Fried continues with her DeSantis derangement syndrome. Her favorite President, Joe Biden, is on record pace with his Executive Orders, yet no mention of an autocratic style there. To all of the new residents of Florida out there, keep Florida Red. Do not let this state turn into California. One final thing, get out there and let’s vote Fried out of office.

  3. wanda rock

    Fried should not waste money or time DeSantis is the best governor we have had in a long long time

  4. Authoritarian Dictators Suck

    Desantis is acting like an Authoritarian Dictator.

    1. Favoring complete obedience or subjection to authority as opposed to individual freedom:
    authoritarian principles; authoritarian attitudes.
    2. Of or relating to a governmental or political system, principle, or practice in which individual freedom is held as completely subordinate to the power or authority of the state, centered either in one person or a small group that is not constitutionally accountable to the people.
    3. Exercising complete or almost complete control over the will of another or of others:
    an authoritarian parent.
    1. a person who favors or acts according to authoritarian principles.

    Dictatorial, imperious, totalitarian, strict, rigid, autocratic, tyrannical, autocrat, disciplinarian, doctrinaire, absolute, dictator, tyrant, despot, absolutist, authoritative, despotic, dogmatic, harsh, magisterial.

    Biden’s executive orders are undoing Trump’s crazy EO’s. Trump came to rely on EO’s for just about everything he did because he was an authoritarian. Biden understands that EO’s are best used to repeal someone else’s legacy, not build his own. Remember, Trump is a one-term president who lied about most everything. Incited an insurrection against our duly elected government and continues to push the Big Lie that he didn’t lose the election and there was wide-spread fraud. None of which s true, Biden won in a landslide (to use Trump’s words from 2016 election). Now little authoritarian wannabe Desantis wants to be like Trump. Governors (and presidents and all other elected officials) should work to bring the people together for the better of the state, and should not use their power to relentlessly attack people they don’t like. That’s what authoritarians do. Authoritarianism is characterized by highly concentrated and centralized government power maintained by political repression and the exclusion of potential challengers.

  5. Anonymous

    Is that you Nancy Pelosi Jr (Nikki Fried)?

  6. Anonymous

    Nikki Fried does all of her interviews on Democratic State sponsored MSNBC. So Ms Consumer Affairs Commissioner why are fuel prices so high?

  7. Anonymous

    After the smear and false narrative from 60 minutes how can one blame DeSantis for not allowing the Democratic State Media inside.

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