Done. Through. Over. Finished. Kaput. Completed. Concluded. Ended. Spent. A wrap.
Whatever you want to call it, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is done with it. The lockdowns. The mask mandates. The business closures. The limited capacity. The vaccine passports. The State of Florida is now having none of it.
“The fact is, we are no longer in a state of emergency,” DeSantis said at a bill signing ceremony for SB 2006. “I think that’s the evidence-based thing to do. I think folks that are saying they need to be policing people at this point, if you’re saying that, then you’re really saying you don’t believe in the vaccines.”
The signing of the bill on Monday will effectively put an end to the state’s pandemic response. Private businesses can still require masks and enforce social distancing, but vaccine passports are now banned under state law.
In addition, emergency orders can now only last 42 days, and there will be stronger checks and balances on the state’s usage of ’emergency’ powers to infringe on citizens’ liberties.
“According to SB 2006, which DeSantis signed, any emergency orders could only last as long as 42 days,” the Orlando Sentinel reported. “It also gives the governor the authority to overrule cities and counties at any time, and city and county commissions the power to overrule mayors.”
“The law grants the Legislature power to overrule any emergency mandates or restrictions by the governor, which DeSantis implied was to prevent future Democratic governors from issuing restrictions Republican Legislatures don’t like,” the report continued.
Florida had one of the best COVID responses of any large state; particularly one with a large, at-risk elderly population. According to the latest data, 30% of the state is fully vaccinated, new cases are at 3,841 per day, and deaths now average 60 per day.
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OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.