Biden Swipes At DeSantis And Abbott For Blocking COVID Restrictions

Biden Swipes At DeSantis And Abbott For Blocking COVID Restrictions

Mona Salama
Mona Salama
August 3, 2021

President Biden denounced Govs. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Greg Abbott of Texas Tuesday for banning COVID restrictions including reimposing mask mandates or vaccine passports, calling their freedom imposed measure "bad health policy," and that the Republcians leaders should "get out of the way" of people who are trying to "do the right thing."

Speaking from the White House on his administration COVID-19 response update, Biden sharply criticized the two GOP governors for their push back against the public health guidance, claiming as reason accounting for a third of all new cases rates reported in the nation.

"Just two states, Florida and Texas, account for one third of all new COVID-19 cases in the entire country. And if some governors aren’t willing to do the right thing to beat this pandemic, then they should allow businesses and universities who want to do the right thing to be able to do it," Biden said

"Worst of all, some state officials are passing laws or signing orders that forbid people from doing the right thing... I say to these governors, 'Please, help.' But if you aren’t going to help, at least get out of the way of the people who are trying to do the right thing. Use your power to save lives," Biden added.

Biden endorsed Democratic city and businesses mandating Americans to be vaccinated in order to have the freedom to go about some daily activities. He applauded New York City in becoming the first city nationwide to mandate some sort of vaccine passport in forcing individuals to show proof of vaccination to dine indoors or to go the gyms. This unconstitutional mandate have so far been barred in at least seven GOP-led states.

Both DeSantis and Abbott have issued executive orders banning mask mandates despite the confusing Centers for Disease and Prevention unreliable guidance in imposing mask mandates for Americans – regardless of their vaccination status indoors.

Last month, DeSantis signed an executive order blocking mask mandates in the state's schools last month, threatening to withhold funding from localities that implemented such measures.

When asked if both Abbott and DeSantis are personally "harming" their citizens with their freedom-imposed decisions, Biden claimed the mask restrictions are "bad health policy."

"I believe the results of their decisions are not good for their constituents. And it's clear to me and to most of the medical experts that the decisions being made, like not allowing mask mandates in school and the like, are bad health policy," Biden responded.

Earlier on Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that DeSantis needed to make a decision about whether they were going to abide by public health guidelines to save people's lives or be guided by politics.

"The guidelines are pretty clear as it relates to the benefit of vaccination, as it relates to the benefit of masking for communities that are not vaccinated," Psaki said during the White House press briefing. "If you’re not going to be part of the solution, if you’re not going to be part of saving people’s lives, then get out of the way and let other people do the job."

DeSantis at a news conference Tuesday proclaimed that Florida would not be imposing any form of shutdown measures amid the surge of the delta varient strain of the virus.

"We're not shutting down, we're gonna have schools open, we're protecting every Floridian's job," DeSantis said. "These interventions have failed time and time again throughout this pandemic, not just in the United States but abroad. They have not stopped the spread and particularly with Delta which is even more transmissable, if it didn't stop it before, it definitely ain't gonna stop it now."

The Florida governor also slammed the media for the "hysteria" in focusing on case counts over death counts, noting that their reporting could possibly lead to Floridians opting to forego much needed medical procedures with its "fear-monger."

"At the end of the day would I rather have 5,000 cases among 20 years or 500 cases among seniors? I would rather have the younger," DeSantis said.

Mona Salama

Mona Salama

Mona Salama is a political reporter for The Floridian covering Congress, the White House and Congressional elections.

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