Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said at a press conference on Tuesday that his state will not return to lockdown protocol in the wake of the Delta variant of the coronavirus.
DeSantis held a presser to announce the progress his administration has made to preserve Florida’s Everglades and distribute water throughout the state, and a reporter asked him about lockdown plans.
DeSantis said state officials are analyzing the data, and it indicates Delta variant infections are plateauing while hospitals are not overrun and are “open for business.”
“In terms of shutting down, we’re not shutting down,” DeSantis said. “We’re going to have schools open. We’re protecting every Floridian’s job in this state. We’re protecting people’s small businesses.”
DeSantis said lockdowns actually kept people from seeking health care because they feared getting the coronavirus.
Moreover, DeSantis said previous draconic lockdown protocols were not effective.
“These interventions have failed time and time again throughout this pandemic, not just in the United States but abroad,” DeSantis said. “They have not stopped the spread, and particularly with Delta, which is even more transmissible. If it didn’t stop it before, it definitely ain’t gonna stop it now.”
DeSantis also rebuked a reporter who asked about children who did not wear masks and are now infected with the coronavirus and hospitalized.
“With all due respect, I find that deplorable to blame a victim who ends up being hospitalized,” DeSantis said. “You don’t know their story; you don’t know what happened with them.”
He said the media’s coverage of the coronavirus throughout the pandemic has been “judgmental” and “negative.”
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