Advertisement
  1. Florida Politics
  2. /
  3. The Buzz

Media prohibited from live coverage of Florida’s Cabinet meeting in Israel

Hours before the delegation was to take off from Miami, a spokeswoman for Gov. Ron DeSantis said the use of cell phones and laptops to cover the meeting over 6,000 miles from Tallahassee would be prohibited.
In January, the Florida Cabinet recognized Jerusalem as Israeli capital, and warned Airbnb over West Bank policy. Photos like this won't be allowed during Wednesday's Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.
Published May 25

Security at the U.S. Embassy in Israel will prevent the media from covering Wednesday’s Florida Cabinet meeting live.

Hours before the delegation was to take off from Miami, a spokeswoman for Gov. Ron DeSantis said the use of cell phones and laptops to cover the meeting over 6,000 miles from Tallahassee would be prohibited.

"The U.S. Embassy has sent us new guidelines for the Wednesday visit which, unfortunately, restricts us all to a great degree,” wrote Helen Ferre in an email to journalists and members of the delegation. “Neither you nor I will be able to enter with cellphone or laptop; photography and filming is allowed but not with cellphone or iPad. This applies to all attending this event, not just to journalists.”

The guidelines will prevent the media from livestreaming Wednesday’s 55-minute “ceremonial” Cabinet meeting, which has come under criticism from First Amendment watchdog groups and Arab-American groups.

The Florida Channel, which is funded by The Florida Legislature and produced and operated by WFSU-TV, will be the only outlet permitted to livestream the proceedings.

“Due to bandwidth limitations, we are able to support one live feed for the Cabinet meeting – this must be done via wired internet connection. The Florida Channel has been prioritized as the organization for live-stream coverage.”

Ferre noted that the restrictions were necessary because “security is an enormous concern” during the trip.

“It is what it is, my sincerest apologies for the inconvenience, it is the only place and time this will occur during this trip unless there is an emergency,” Ferre wrote.

USA TODAY NETWORK – FLORIDA Statehouse Reporter Jeffrey Schweers is accompanying Gov. Ron DeSantis and his 90-plus member delegation on his Israeli business development mission this week as a pool reporter for the Florida Society of News Editors. Schweers will provide regular reports and updates from Tel Aviv and Jerusalem for Florida’s newspapers. Follow him on Twitter for updates @jeffschweers.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. State Rep. Chris Sprowls, 35, addresses the Florida House of Representatives, Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019, in Tallahassee, Fla., after the Republican was elected to lead the 120-member chamber. (AP Photo/Bobby Caina Calvan) BOBBY CAINA CALVAN  |  AP
    The Pinellas Republican did not shy away from the wedge issues of the day, wading into 2020 presidential politics, abortion and climate change.
  2. The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County identified a positive case of hepatitis A in a food service worker at Hamburger Mary's in Ybor City on Oct. 22, 2018. [JOSH FIALLO | Times] JOSH FIALLO | TIMES  |  JOSH FIALLO | Times
    Slightly more than 200,000 people have been vaccinated this year — a huge jump from the 49,324 people vaccinated in all of 2018.
  3. This satellite image shows Hurricane Michael on Oct. 9, 2018, as it enters the Gulf of Mexico. It made landfall near Mexico Beach in the Panhandle as a Category 5 storm. [Photo courtesy of NOAA] NOAA
    Nearly a year after the storm, 18,000 claims are still open.
  4. The Florida House Education Committee focuses on early education in its first meeting of the 2020 session. The Florida Channel
    Gov. Ron DeSantis also had set a priority of getting more youngsters ready for kindergarten.
  5. Energy-efficient LED light bulbs. (Times | 2008) St. Petersburg Times
    Trump’s administration recently scrapped a rule that would have phased out incandescent light bulbs.
  6. President Donald Trump speaks at the 2019 House Republican Conference Member Retreat Dinner in Baltimore on Sept. 12. JOSE LUIS MAGANA  |  AP
    The country is moving in that direction, though.
  7. She’s the fifth candidate to announce her campaign for the GOP primary.
  8. Rep. Chris Sprowls, R- Palm Harbor.  [SCOTT KEELER  |   Times] SCOTT KEELER  |  Tampa Bay Times
    At 2 p.m. today, the Republicans of the Florida House are scheduled to elect the Palm Harbor state representative to serve as speaker for the 2021 - 2022 term.
  9. Students and community activists marched in Tampa last year after the Feb. 14, 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. The attack killed 17 people and gave rise to Florida’s school guardian law, which this year was changed to allow classroom teachers to be armed. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the measure into law. [MONICA HERNDON   |   Times]
    "This is the dumb, backwards stuff that we do here,” one Florida lawmaker said.
  10. Florida Senator Tom Lee, R- Thonotosassa. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times] SCOTT KEELER  |  TAMPA BAY TIMES
    Tom Lee chairs the Florida Senate’s Infrastructure and Security Committee, which has been tasked by the Senate president with coming up with a response to the most recent spate of mass shootings.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement