Democrats seek stronger pandemic response following record case numbers

Published: Jul. 13, 2020 at 4:42 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Florida Democrats are calling for a drastic change in course in the state’s coronavirus response after breaking the national record for the most cases in a single day this weekend.

They blame the governor for the spike in cases.

Florida Democrats are taking aim at the governor in a new television spot accusing him of downplaying the pandemic.

In a virtual press conference, Florida Congresswoman Debbie Mucarsel-Powell said the state needs to drastically ramp up its response.

“The longer we wait, the more difficult it’s going to be to implement these steps,” said Mucarsel-Powell.

She and other Democrats are calling for more testing and contact tracing.

They also reiterated their call for a statewide mask order.

“If we don’t do the things and make the sacrifices and make the sacrifices now that we should have made months ago, we’re going to end up right back where we started,” said State Senator Oscar Braynon.

Democrats also speculated the governor is secretly attempting to achieve herd immunity, although he has never made any such statement.

Dr. Aileen Marty, an epidemiologist at FIU, joined Democrats on the call.

She said attempts at herd immunity in Sweden and Spain failed.

“We now know that most people who acquire it lose their immunity within a few months,” said Marty.

She also fears sending kids back to the classroom will only worsen the situation.

“You put children from different households in a normal brick and mortar school in a zone that has 25% positivity, you’re gonna have an increased transmission in the community,” said Marty.

And Democrats argued if the state doesn’t make changes, it is possible stay-at-home orders will once again be necessary.

The governor has remained firm, he’s not reversing course.

We reached out to Governor Ron DeSantis’ office for a response to Democrats’ suggestion he is attempting to achieve herd immunity but did not hear back in time for this story.

Copyright 2020 WCTV. All rights reserved.

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