Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis canceled a New York state appearance on Sunday over what was called an “unforeseen tragedy.”
No explanation was immediately forthcoming as to the nature of the tragedy.
Fox News said it had sought an explanation from the DeSantis team but had no reply as of Monday morning.
DeSantis had been scheduled to appear at a $25,000-a-plate event in support of Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin of New York, according to the New York Post.
The congressman is challenging Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul.
“An unforeseen tragedy forced Governor DeSantis to reschedule his trip to New York,” Zeldin spokeswoman Katie Vincentz said Sunday, according to the Post.
“While we’re rescheduling with Governor DeSantis for a later date, tonight’s fundraiser will proceed and is expected to raise almost a million dollars.”
Hochul has included attacks on Florida and DeSantis in her campaign, including one aimed at Jewish New Yorkers during an Aug. 10 Holocaust remembrance event.
“I just want to say to the 1.77 million Jews who call New York home: Thank you for calling New York home,” she said, according to the Post. “Don’t go anywhere or to another state. Florida is overrated.”
At the time, DeSantis campaign spokeswoman Lindsey Curnutte said Hochul should look at her own mess, according to Newsmax.
“An event about Holocaust education is not the time to launch cheap attacks at a fellow governor,” Curnutte said. “Kathy Hochul’s tasteless comments were offensive to thousands of Jewish people who are fleeing her state because of New York’s oppressive taxes, shuttered businesses, crime-infested cities, and needless mandates.”
Hochul further slammed Florida last week at a Kingston, New York, rally where she attacked Zeldin, former President Donald Trump, and Republican Dutchess County Executive and congressional candidate Marc Molinaro, according to the New York Post.
“We are fighting for democracy. We’re fighting to bring government back to the people and out of the hands of dictators,” Hochul said at a rally for Democrat Pat Ryan, who is Molinaro’s congressional opponent.
“Trump and Zeldin and Molinaro – just jump on a bus and head down to Florida where you belong. OK? Get out of town. Because you don’t represent our values,” she said.
DeSantis hit back on Friday, according to Fox saying Hochul and Democrat Charlie Crist, who is running against DeSantis in Florida, “are representative of this leftist mindset that they do believe the conservative half of the country are effectively second-class citizens.”
That comment was echoed by New York GOP chair Nick Langworthy.
“Hochul should give up her creepy obsession with Florida and focus on the crime and economic crises in her own backyard,” he said in a statement Friday, according to the Post.