Florida officials, media and residents mock NBC for 'partisan anecdotes' about people leaving the state

Staffers for Gov. Ron DeSantis accused NBC News didn't seem to understand the concept of 'net migration'

Florida officials accused NBC News of cherry-picking data in an article it published over the weekend, claiming the state wasn't all it has been cracked up to be in recent years. 

The article titled, "They came for Florida's sun and sand. They got soaring costs and a culture war," which claims that even though Florida has seen a population boom in recent years, some residents and recent transplants are citing rising costs, divisive politics and unpredictable weather in their decision to leave the state.

"But while hundreds of thousands of new residents have flocked to the state on the promise of beautiful weather, no income tax and lower costs, nearly 500,000 left in 2022, according to the most recent census data," the article read. "Contributing to their move was a perfect storm of soaring insurance costs, a hostile political environment, worsening traffic and extreme weather, according to interviews with more than a dozen recent transplants and longtime residents who left the state in the past two years."


Welcome to Florida sign

Welcome to Florida sign (Jim Steinfeldt/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

"The Sunshine State isn't always as sunny as it may seem," NBC News posted to X, along with the article. "Hundreds of thousands of new residents have flocked to Florida with the promise of beautiful weather and no income tax. But nearly 500,000 left in 2022, according to the most recent Census data."

But, many Florida officials were quick to call out NBC News, claiming they didn't understand net migration as more people moved to the state than left in 2022. 

"Florida weather definitely isn’t for everyone, I will admit that," Christina Pushaw, who works for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, commented. "I like it, but it can be hard for some people to adjust to the humidity. And of course, storms. But you are completely missing the point with this article. Far more people moved TO Florida than left Florida."


"FACT CHECK: NBC apparently doesn’t know what ‘net migration’ means," she posted, along with statistics that said in 2022, the state saw the largest percentage increase in net population migration, making it the fastest growing state in the nation. 

"Yesterday, @NBCNews told you only half of a statistic to try to take a swipe at Florida (FL's net in-migration in 2022 led the nation and was record-breaking for the state.)" Bryan Griffin, communications director for DeSantis, posted. "And, they chose a few clearly partisan anecdotes to flesh out their story. See how the media works?"

placeholder"Great example of media bias on full display — but on the bright side, Florida will be just fine if NBC liberals decide not to move here," Pushaw said in response. 

"NBC highlights people 'fleeing' Florida despite highest-in-nation net migration," Florida Secretary of Commerce, J. Alex Kelly posted in response. 

"Sorry, but Florida is popular. And it's not that hard to understand why," election data guru Nate Silver posted. "The NBC News story purporting to show a lot of 'mover's remorse' in Florida was BS. The state has a *low* rate of out-migration. People come there, and stay."

"NBC News apparently has no idea how net migration works — Florida was far and away the top US state in net migration over the past few years, while California ranked dead last Because Florida has competent leadership and sane policies, and California doesn’t," Outkick writer Ian Miller posted on X. 

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