Tallahassee, Fla. — Today, with Florida reporting a record-high 2,783 new COVID-19 cases, Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, an independently-elected member of the Florida Cabinet, offered the following statement on June 16th:
“Today’s record-high new cases makes it clear: Governor DeSantis has lost control of Florida’s COVID-19 response. His policies are simply not working, and he’s recklessly reopening Florida despite the data screaming for caution. Refusing to acknowledge the alarming patterns in cases, hospitalizations, and positivity is not only arrogant, but will cost lives, public health, and our economy. To our citizens, I implore you to wear masks and continue social distancing – and just because a place is open, doesn’t mean it’s safe to go there. To our local governments, please encourage your residents to stay home, mask up, and socially distance. If the Governor is unwilling to make the right decisions, then they must be made in our cities, our states, and our homes. We are in this together, and I will continue fighting on behalf of all Floridians.”
Tuesday’s new cases is the second record-high this week after Sunday’s 2,581 cases, and follows increasing trends of case positivity and hospitalizations, which “cannot be attributed to more testing.” Commissioner Fried “has been the most outspoken critic of the way the governor has handled his messaging to the public during the pandemic,” according to the Miami Herald.