Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis blasted The Washington Post and other “legacy media outlets” over a report that his press secretary registered as a foreign agent due to her previous work for a former president of the nation of Georgia.
DeSantis shared his thoughts during a press conference in Florida on Wednesday in response to a reporter’s question about his press secretary, Christina Pushaw.
“I am not deterred by any smear piece from these legacy media outlets,” DeSantis said, according to WFLA. “The only reason they’re attacking her is because she does a great job and she’s effective at calling out their lies and their phony narratives.”
“I would be much more concerned with my secretary if the Washington Post was writing puff pieces about her. Then I would think something is wrong,” he added.
He also called the effort a “ridiculous attempt at smear,” according to NBC News.
Pushaw’s attorney Michael Sherwin addressed the recent registration in a statement published by The Washington Post.
“Her efforts included writing op-eds, reaching out to supporters and officials, and advocating on his behalf in Georgia and in the United States,” Sherwin said. “The work ended in 2020. Ms. Pushaw was notified recently by the DOJ that her work on behalf of Mr. Saakashvilli likely required FARA registration. Ms. Pushaw filed for the registration retroactively as soon as she was made aware.”
Saakashvili has been a close ally of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, with Pushaw’s work focusing on the need for free and fair elections in the country of Georgia, according to her attorney.
The Foreign Agents Registration Act requires that any person who works on behalf of a foreign government, political party, or entity register as a foreign agent.
Its purpose is “to promote transparency with respect to foreign influence within the United States by ensuring that the United States government and the public know the source of certain information from foreign agents intended to influence American public opinion, policy, and laws, thereby facilitating informed evaluation of that information,” the Department of Justice states.