The highly-anticipated debate between State House candidate Bonnie Jackson (R) and State Rep. Anna Eskamani (D) at the WESH-2 studios in Orlando was canceled after the TV station refused Jackson entry for not providing COVID-19 vaccination information.
The move by WESH-2 to refuse Jackson entry because of her vaccination status is in direct violation of Governor Ron DeSantis’s Executive Order Number 21-81 which clearly states that “individual COVID-19 vaccination records are private health information which should not be shared by mandate.”
Gov. DeSantis’s executive edict also states that divulging this private health information “will harm patient privacy.”
Officials at WESH-2 station, whose parent company is based in New York State, told Jackson that it was their policy that individuals entering their facility needed to show proof of vaccination.
“Everyone vaccinated,” was asked of Jackson by one of the station’s producers as her entered.
Jackson responded,” Yeah, I’m not answering that question.”
The producer responded, saying,” Unfortunately, we cannot have you in the building if you are not vaccinated” because it was their “corporate policy” and that they had to “follow the rules.”
Jackson responded by pointing out that the station’s “corporate policy is a violation of an executive order.”
Jackson was then escorted off of the WESH-2 station premises.
“I was escorted off the premises because I refused to divulge my vaccination status,” said Jackson. “They repeatedly asked me about my vaccination status, we declined to answer because it's nobody’s business.”
Rep. Eskamani did show up to the debate, and quickly announced the cancelation due to Jackson staging “ a fit over the COVID-19 safety visitor policies.”
“That moment when you’re supposed to debate your Republican opponent at a local TV station but instead she stages a fit over their COVID-19 safety visitor policies so the debate gets canceled LOL And she calls me the drama queen,” stated Eskamani.
The race between Jackson and Eskamani is considered a very competitive ideological race.
Eskamani, a true blue Progressive Democrat who has received high praise from Democratic Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez an supports all stages of abortion, has been championing an anti-DeSantis agenda.
"Which is a great opportunity, in general overall. This is a political opportunity a more working-class politics (Sic) to enter that seat. I always say, not all Democrats are the same, and just because you have a “D” next to your name, doesn’t necessarily that you are championing the policies that are going to help the working class. And this is an opportunity where you can actually have a candidate like that," said Ocasio-Cortez of Eskamani.
Jackson is running as a pro-life, Florida First Republican who will continue to champion Gov. DeSantis legislative agenda.