Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is facing criticism for not locking the state down to impede the spread of the coronavirus. As of Monday, March 30, Florida had more than 5,700 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and is quickly headed toward 6,000.
DeSantis has said that he doesn’t want to force the entire state into something unnecessary as many areas in Florida have little to no confirmed cases of the virus.
But with Florida’s cases rising daily, should the governor reconsider his stance?
He may have already arrived there. In S. Florida today, he announced a shelter-in-place order for a number of counties, including Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Palm Beach. He did so because the counties under the order represent nearly 60 percent of all cases of the virus statewide.
The order may be too late, though. With obvious evidence of community spread, portions of south Florida may be north of 1,000 cases in two weeks.
To DeSantis’ credit, though, this is the first time any current elected officials have had to deal with a pandemic. Many are unsure of how to deal with widespread sickness that’s causing economic calamity across the country.
If DeSantis shuts the entire state down, does he risk ruining Florida’s economy for years to come, and with it, his political future?
Florida’s economy is tethered to consumption, and with folks having the ability to spend money on novelty, many businesses have been forced to shut down or layoff their workforce.
What’s a governor to do? Protect the state’s citizens by shutting them in their homes or piecemeal it to guarantee that everyone doesn’t lose their jobs?
It’s a no win situation that sadly is dependent upon the health and well being of the population and the economy.
DeSantis may be forced to close the state soon, but in the interim, he’s literally taking it one day at a time.