From Nikki Fried, Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner:
For months and months, Gov. Ron DeSantis touted his brand of Florida exceptionalism when it comes to how the state responded to Covid-19. Now a surge in cases — primarily among those who remain unvaccinated — is creating an inconvenient interruption to that narrative.
Cases in the state more than doubled in the past week and now hospitals around the state are seeing a jump in admissions, forcing some of them to impose restrictions on visitations.
When asked about it on Monday, DeSantis brushed it aside and said he had previously cautioned that this could happen. “It’s a seasonal virus and this is the seasonal pattern it follows in the Sun Belt states,” he told reporters during a Central Florida press conference. DeSantis also predicted that the Covid case numbers would likely fall in August.
Despite the spike in cases, DeSantis has leaned into the same laissez faire approach to the coronavirus pandemic that has earned him praise from conservatives over the past year. His handling of the outbreak has earned him rising-star status among many Republicans, while fueling speculation of a potential 2024 presidential bid.
His reelection campaign recently released a line of merchandise taking aim at Anthony Fauci, the federal government’s top infectious disease expert who has become the face of the national response to the pandemic. (more)