Statement by FDP Chair Manny Diaz as Florida Shatters All-Time Record for COVID-19 Hospitalizations

Today the State of Florida broke its record for COVID-19 hospitalizations for the third day in a row, with 11,515 now being treated for the disease in hospitals across the state. That means the number of Floridians hospitalized with COVID-19 has increased by a factor of 11 since mid June, with 2,400 of them currently in intensive care. 

Last Friday the state reported more than 21,000 new coronavirus infections, the highest figure since the beginning of the pandemic.

In response to these dangerous developments, Florida Democratic Party Chairman Manny Diaz released the following statement:

“Governor DeSantis’s utter lack of leadership during the current health crisis in Florida is as stunning as it is infuriating. While he traveled across the country to Texas and Utah over the last few weeks attempting to bolster his personal brand in advance of a possible presidential run, the state saw the numbers of new infections and hospitalizations soar without any concrete action on the part of the Governor. Worse yet, he has doubled down on his opposition to allowing local governments and school boards to implement the public health measures they deem necessary to contain this burgeoning disaster.

“Today Governor DeSantis even had the audacity to declare that this major health crisis, one we are all seeing unfold in real time, represents nothing more than ‘hysteria’ whipped up by the media. I wonder if the families and friends of the over 11 thousand Floridians being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals across our state right now believe the attention rightfully being placed on their plight constitutes unwarranted ‘hysteria.’

“Much like his mentor, ex-president Donald Trump, Governor DeSantis appears far more interested in downplaying the threat of this pandemic and appealing to a radical constituency within his own party than in acting decisively to prevent further human suffering and death. His absent management of this entire situation is, without a doubt, one of the most shameful displays of political cravenness I have ever seen. I plead with him to reconsider his stance and do what he was elected to do: lead our state in a moment of crisis.”

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