Florida is the only state in the nation with 5000 or more coronavirus cases that does not have a stay at home order. Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, who refused to shut down the state’s beaches in an effort to grab spring break cash from college students, has been under growing pressure to issue the executive order.
He finally has – although it is far more limited than those in other states.
The stay at home order will be state-wide, and will go into effect Thursday at midnight, lasting for 30 days. It is focused on “individuals, and it is not telling non-essential businesses to shut down entirely. He says those businesses can still make deliveries or things of that nature, but people cannot congregate in the business itself,” WCTV reports.
DeSantis, who is closely tied to President Donald Trump, claimed he had not issued the order because Trump had not instructed him to do so.
“On Tuesday, DeSantis said at a news conference that he had no plans to issue a statewide order because the White House had not told him to do so,” The Washington Post reported.
Also Tuesday, President Donald Trump called DeSantis “a great governor who knows exactly what he’s doing.”
Florida is home to huge numbers of people, including seniors, who are at extreme risk of death from coronavirus.
Knowing the state’s electoral college votes could determine the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. Trump has paid special attention to Florida and its new GOP governor. The Trump administration has ensured that Florida, unlike many blue states, has received all of its requested medical equipment and supplies, including PPE.
There are currently 7000 coronavirus cases in the Sunshine State, 900 people have been hospitalized, and 86 have died.
One attorney says his lawsuit against DeSantis to shut down the state did the trick:
keep fighting until the state in its entirety is closed.
— Daniel Uhlfelder (@DWUhlfelderLaw) April 1, 2020
On social media many are furious. DeSantis is being called “a flailing, derelict governor.”
difficult to exaggerate the extent of desantis’ failure here. a flailing, derelict governor who doesn’t know what to do now that his job requires more from him than just entrenching GOP rule and leasing the state to his rich buddies https://t.co/O4clYv2Lm6
— b-boy bouiebaisse (@jbouie) April 1, 2020
It is about time @RonDeSantisFL that you are issuing stay-at-home order for entire state of Florida. Sadly, it may be too late and the spread now harder to contain. People will die as a result of this delay.
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) April 1, 2020
It’s a staggering, cowardly failure in leadership that it took @GovRonDeSantis this long to do the obvious thing. Thousands of people will die because he didn’t want to disrupt spring break. Just a travesty. https://t.co/Gm1BeSffy3
— Tommy Vietor (@TVietor08) April 1, 2020
Two weeks after the horse escaped and got on a plane back to the Midwest, Governor DeSantis is closing the barn door with millions of vulnerable seniors to clean up the mess. https://t.co/oCGTntQahq
— emptywheel (@emptywheel) April 1, 2020
How many people will die because Ron Desantis is a coward? https://t.co/hfXZ813kaj
— Molly Jong-Fast🏡 (@MollyJongFast) April 1, 2020
Ron DeSantis is only know ordering Florida to stay at home, weeks later than experts suggested.
Sadly, I think the state’s residents will suffer for his grandstanding.
— Brian O’Sullivan (@osullivanauthor) April 1, 2020
— b-boy bouiebaisse (@jbouie) April 1, 2020
US COVID death toll projected to hit almost 300,000 by December
An influential novel coronavirus pandemic model now projects that deaths from the disease in the United States could hit almost 300,000 by the start of December.
NPR reports that researchers at the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation say that the United States is headed toward a grim fall in which COVID-19 deaths will nearly double from their current level of 160,000 in the next four months.
The only Texas prison reporting zero coronavirus cases is where inmates make soap. But that’s not what’s credited with protecting it.
Of more than 100 Texas prison units, the Roach Unit's apparent ability to avoid the virus has been attributed to a remote location and a warden who strictly enforces precautionary measures.
The only Texas prison that hasn’t had any staff or inmates test positive for the new coronavirus is the same one where inmates make soap and package hand sanitizer for the state’s lockups. Prisoners aren’t allowed to use the latter.
How this one unit seemingly remains untouched by a virus that has ravaged the state’s prison system, however, has been credited not to its soap factory, but to the prison’s location and the warden’s strict enforcement of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s coronavirus policy. Meanwhile, those inside prisons with hundreds of infected inmates have long reported dangerous practices. In lawsuits and letters, they have described officers without face masks, forced intermingling between infected and healthy prisoners, and limits to soap and cleaning supplies.
Australia arrests two for planning anti-lockdown protest
Australian police have arrested two men accused of planning an anti-lockdown protest in Melbourne, an unusual move to stop an event that authorities said would put "lives at risk".
Police said Friday that the two men in their 40s had been detained after mobile phones and a computer were seized and both would be formally charged with inciting a criminal offence.
The pair were arrested following an investigation into a protest of hundreds of people planned for Melbourne city centre on Sunday, police told AFP.
The gathering would breach Melbourne's wide-ranging lockdown -- which entered into force Thursday, banning large gatherings and preventing residents from going outside except to work, exercise or buy essentials.