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NBC News attempts to fact-check DeSantis for saying he flew home 700 people from Israel: ‘Half-true’

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NBC News was mocked after attempting to fact-check Republican presidential candidate Gov. Ron DeSantis for claiming during the third Republican primary debate on Wednesday he sent planes to Israel to bring back stranded Americans. 

“[President] Biden’s neglect has been atrocious, we had Floridians that were over there after the attack. He left them stranded; they couldn’t get flights out. So, I scrambled resources in Florida. I sent planes over to Israel and I brought back over 700 people to safety,” DeSantis said. 

NBC News’ Peter W. Klein declared this was “half true” before providing details of his conclusion. 

“The Biden administration initially told Americans in Israel to take advantage of commercial flights on Oct. 9, but flights from Israel to the U.S. were scarce and prices were reportedly as high as $25,000. Some Americans in Israel at the time posted on social media that they were stranded,” Klein wrote. 

DESANTIS TOUTS ISRAEL EVACUATION EFFORT AS FLORIDA ‘FILLS THE VOID’ WITH AMERICANS LANDING IN TAMPA

Ron DeSantis in Israel

NBC News was mocked after attempting to fact-check Republican presidential candidate Gov. Ron DeSantis for accurately claiming during the third Republican primary debate on Wednesday he sent planes to Israel to bring back stranded Americans.  (AP/Maya Alleruzzo)

“On Oct. 12, DeSantis signed an executive order that allowed the Florida Division of Emergency Management to pay for Americans in Israel to fly back to the U.S. The flights, however, were organized by Tampa-based nonprofit Project Dynamo, which specializes in rescuing Americans in distress, and DeSantis’ primary role was to fund the flights,” the NBC News journalist continued. “On the same day, the U.S. announced they would help Americans evacuate on charter flights. Some 1,500 Americans did leave Israel with help from the U.S. government. U.S. citizens were responsible for paying for the government flights, while DeSantis footed the bill for his flights.”

When NBC News posted the “half true” fact-check on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, it was slapped with added context from readers that said, “The governor ordered the evacuation via an EO. The mechanics of how it was done doesn’t negate the fact that the Governor’s statement is true.” 

DeSantis press secretary Jeremy Redfern responded on X, saying the governor’s claim is “100% true” and “he sent planes to Israel, and he brought back over 700 people.”

NBC News did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Fox News contributor Mollie Hemingway roasted NBC News for the attempted fact-check. 

“NBC ‘News,’ home of the Russia collusion scam and a thousand other info ops, gets community noted for a cartoonishly fake fact check of Ron DeSantis. Even their stupid ‘fact’ ‘check’ admits it’s true, while rating it somehow false,” Hemingway wrote. 

NBC fact check of DeSantis

NBC News was widely criticized on social media after posting a fact-check about Gov. Ron DeSantis. (Twitter/Screenshot)

Many others criticized NBC News for the fact-check. 

“Helpful tip: when something is correct you just call it ‘True.’ No worries, we know you’re not super familiar with truth, NBC,” Mediaite’s Caleb Howe wrote. 

Journalist Jeryl Bier posted an Oct. 23 NBC News story that said “DeSantis’ administration chartered flights out of Israel for Florida residents trying to get out of the country.” 

Author Tim Carney responded, “Once again, fact checkers at best are opinion writers with facts—which is a great genre. But here the opinion is basically ‘DeSantis is a booger.’”

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Last month, DeSantis told Fox News he saw a lack of actionable leadership on the part of the Biden administration and decided to see what Tallahassee could do to execute what he claimed Washington could not.

“It was sad because the State Department and the embassy over in Israel were not helpful to these people. If you think about it, illegal aliens come across our southern border and the federal government will fly them all over the country for free,” DeSantis said.

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Fox News’ Nikolas Lanum and Charles Creitz contributed to this report. 

For more Culture, Media, Education, Opinion, and channel coverage, visit foxnews.com/media.


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