during the latter end of 2021, the Sunshine State had the lowest cases of COVID-19. However, this changed in come December when the state experienced a surge in COVID-19 cases, which has been attributed to the spread of the Omicron variant. While health experts have shared that the symptoms are mild, Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) stirred up controversy over New Year’s Eve weekend by tweeting that “the real crisis is the irrational hysteria” surrounding the pandemic.
Republican lawmakers have been at odds with Democratic lawmakers since the beginning of the pandemic. A number of Democratic lawmakers across the state have directed criticism at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) over his handling of the pandemic, and the criticism has also extended to GOP lawmakers across the country.
According to the Miami Herald, 56,865 new cases have been added to the state’s toll.
This along with Floridians waiting long hours in order to receive testing has only ramped up anxiety surrounding the spread of the new variant.
In a recent interview with the Associated Press, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the Director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, commented that the new variant of “the disease is mild,” and heavily suggested that people receive their boosters to combat the variant.
Senator Rubio, tweeting about the recent surge of the variant, commented on the symptoms, saying that “record numbers testing positive for a sore throat isn’t a crisis” and adding that “people in the hospital for car accidents testing positive isn’t a surge.”
Record numbers testing positive for a sore throat isn’t a crisis
And people in the hospital for car accidents testing positive isn’t a surge
The real crisis is the irrational hysteria which has people with no symptoms waiting hours for a test or missing work for 10 days
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) December 31, 2021
Instead, the Florida lawmaker argued that “the real crisis is the irrational hysteria which has people with no symptoms waiting hours for a test or missing work for 10 days.”
In response, Rubio received a number of tweets criticizing his ideas shared.
Rubio is currently running a reelection campaign, and he faces a challenger in Florida Rep. Val Demings (D).