Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to govern like a boss — or a man with a higher calling — making decisive, fact-based decisions in handling the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Monday, the Republican governor lifted local pandemic-related emergency orders while signing a bill that bans vaccine passports and fines businesses or institutions up to $5,000 per violation if they require proof of vaccination — businesses can still have mask requirements and perform temperature checks.
“The fact is, we are no longer in a state of emergency,” DeSantis said during a news conference, adding that “emergency orders, these extraordinary measures, at this point are not justifiable.”
DeSantis spoke about how some areas of the country “have been under the yoke of some serious restrictions and lockdowns for months and months on end,” and at one point, took a not so subtle dig at the mayor of Washington, DC for her recent flip-flop that resulted in a ban on dancing at weddings.
“Washington, D.C. just banned dancing at weddings, so they’re literally going to have law enforcement there, policing people’s weddings that say you can’t dance, when this is the day you’ve been waiting for? It’s insane,” he said.
The popular governor referenced the dancing ban a second time while speaking on the effectiveness of vaccines.
“There is enough vaccine to go around,” he stated. “The vaccine data is fantastic, and you have to ask yourself, if given that type of performance of the vaccine, given how great the monoclonal antibodies have done — which nobody ever talks about, but those have done very well — given all that, if you still need emergency powers under those circumstances, then when are you gonna be able to move beyond it?”
“And I think as we’re seeing throughout the rest of the country, if cities are banning dancing at weddings or doing some of that stuff, that’s just so, so outside of what would be justifiable based on the evidence,” DeSantis added.
The remarks are in reference to DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, who angered people when she caved to the mob after lifting a mask mandate for those who’ve been vaccinated and reinstated it less than 24 hours later.
Not only did Bowser reinstate the mask mandate, she had required businesses to post a sign on their doors warning people that they would not be allowed access unless they prove they are fully vaccinated or wearing a mask. The Democratic mayor banned dancing at wedding receptions, as well, requiring guests to remain seated and socially distanced because allegedly when people dance or stand, they may touch each other and get too close.
DeSantis also enacted an executive order making provisions in the legislation he signed effective immediately instead of the established July 1 date.
“You have a right to participate in society — go to a restaurant, movie, a ballgame, all these things — without having to divulge this type of information. And oh, by the way, you give that to big companies, they are going to absolutely try to monetize that. So, we didn’t want to go down that road,” DeSantis said.
The media is quick to note that Florida, the third largest state in the U.S., has had the third-most COVID-19 cases and the fourth-most deaths of any state — they are not as quick to report that Florida has the highest percentage of elderly, and that the state is ranked 28th in COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 people, per Becker’s Hospital Review.
“I think that’s the evidence-based thing to do,” the governor said. “I think folks that are saying that they need to be policing people at this point — if you’re saying that, you really are saying you don’t believe in the vaccines, you don’t believe in the data, you don’t believe in the science.”
“Given the situation we find ourselves in, given that the legislature spoke very clearly about this, given the fact that we have widespread availability of vaccines, that the vaccines are effective, I think these emergency orders — the fact is we’re no longer in a state of emergency,” he added.
DeSantis’ full remarks on Monday can be seen below:
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