Miami, May 4 2021: Criticizing the strict security and emergency measures that are in place all across the US, Florida governor Ron DeSantis says the corona virus vaccine is now available to everyone above the age of 16 without proof of residence and so it is time to lift all COVID-19 related restrictions in the state.He has already signed an executive order to that effect and has invalidated any local emergency orders which have been in place since July 1 last year.
He cited the wide availability and effectiveness of Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson and Johnson vaccines at all state and county vaccination centers, pharmacies and even supermarkets. According to DeSantis, the part of the total 23 million population that still remains un-vaccinated is not due to a lack of vaccine supply or availability. Florida has so far vaccinated 9 million people with a first dose and DeSantis calls this the next logical step backed by evidence. DeSantis, a potential candidate for the 2024 presidential race and who enjoys support from Pro-Trump people, says those who still think there is a need for restrictions don’t believe in the effectiveness of the vaccines.
The move by the governor has attracted criticism from democratic mayors however, with Daniella Levine-Cava, democratic mayor of Miami-Dada county, the most populous in the state, expressing concern and saying the state is still very much in a public health emergency. According to Rick Kriseman, St.Petersburg mayor, “Fewer than half of our residents have been vaccinated, and we face a growing threat from variants.” He added that DeSantis was putting his own ambitions above health policy and that this move was not in the interest of the residents of the state, rather it was motivated by politics.
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