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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis reacted to recent actions taken in response to the US monkeypox outbreak, telling reporters at a briefing on Wednesday that his government was “not afraid.”
The Republican governor said during a press briefing that Florida will “focus on the facts” instead.
“I am so sick of politicians – and we have seen this in the case of COVID – who are trying to spread fear among the population,” he said. “People called us, mothers were worried about whether their children would get infected at school.”
“We’re not afraid,” DeSantis added. “And we’re not going to go out and try to piss people off and try to act like people can’t live their lives like they normally do because of something.”
He said leaders of states that have declared a public health emergency will abuse that power to “restrict your freedom.”
“I guarantee you that this is what will happen,” he said. “We’ve seen so much of this with COVID.”
the government of Cathy Hochul, Gavin Newsom, and J.B. Pritzker—all Democrats from New York, California, and Illinois, respectively—declared a state of emergency. over the spread of monkeypox.
New York currently accounts for 1,666 US cases.
The latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show 525 confirmed cases of monkeypox and orthopoxvirus reported in Florida and currently 6,617 cases nationwide.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared monkeypox a global health emergencywhile the virus is spreading to dozens of countries that are usually free of infections.
Monkeypox can be transmitted to anyone through close, personal, and often skin contact, including direct contact with objects and surfaces that have been used by a monkeypox patient.
A pregnant woman can pass the virus to her fetus through the placenta.