A Miami ER doctor explained how Florida’s COVID-19 response went from success to disaster
by Charles Davis/Business Insider
Eight weeks ago, conservative media outlets and politicians hailed Florida as a model for addressing the coronavirus pandemic, showing that there was no need to shut down a state for months to ride out the first wave of infections.
Gov. Ron DeSantis, a former military prosecutor and Republican representative, was all but saying, I told you so. And his allies were singing his praise.
“He’s done a spectacular job,” US President Donald Trump said at a joint news conference in April, as The Washington Post reported in May in a story on the apparent victory of business as usual. “He’s going to be opening up large portions, and ultimately pretty quickly because he’s got great numbers in all of Florida.”
By early May, Florida’s restaurants were once again entertaining guests, and the governor’s office was boasting.
“He’s just not doing it the way Cuomo is doing it,” Helen Ferré, a spokeswoman for DeSantis, told The Tampa Bay Times on May 4, referring to New York’s Democratic governor, Andrew Cuomo. “He’s doing it the conservative way.”