OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is warning that Democrats are likely prepared to return to the bad old days of the pandemic if they keep Congress in the November midterm elections.
“If they feel they need them,” the GOP governor said during an Expand American Energy forum on Friday in Doral, Fla., Democrats will reimpose COVID-19 restrictions on as much of the country as possible.
“The minute those elections are over, they will impose mandates if they feel the need to do that. They will impose restrictions,” DeSantis said.
“And so that will happen. If those types of people are allowed to be put in power, my view on that is, they’ve put Fauci in the witness protection program because he will say, you know, no, you should still wear a mask, and he’s never going to say be normal, go back to normal. So they know that, and they know that that’s not what people want,” DeSantis further noted.
He went on to speculate that blue state governors will reimpose pandemic restrictions as well by the winter of this year.
“There’s nothing wrong if on an individual basis you make a certain calculation. That’s fine. We encourage you to do that. But it’s wrong to mandate people and restrict people, and that will happen. I guarantee you, winter of 2022, any of those folks that are there, you are going to see that happen,” he continued.
“The only way to make sure it doesn’t happen is to have nice, big, red wave. So, we’ll see,” he added.
On Monday last week, DeSantis made similar remarks in a panel discussion with Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joesph Ladapo and several other medical experts in which he called ending on coronavirus restrictions.
“There is no place in Florida for COVID theater. These experts agree – no masking, no mandates and no medical censorship,” he noted in the video clip that was posted to Twitter.
There is no place in Florida for COVID theater.
These experts agree – no masking, no mandates and no medical censorship. pic.twitter.com/Vx27FxSCNj
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) March 9, 2022
“Over the past two years, the data has shown us what works and what doesn’t work. It is long past time to stop the COVID Theater,” DeSantis said.
“In Florida, we told the truth, we let the data drive our response, and we let Floridians make decisions for themselves and their children. As a result, Florida is in a better spot than states who used fear mongering and mandates,” he added.
DeSantis and his administration have for months pushed back against efforts on the federal and local level to impose or leave in place COVID-19 mandates and restrictions.
“In Florida, we won’t let them lock ya down, we won’t let them restrict you, we’re not gonna let them impose mandates, we’re not gonna let them close the schools,” said DeSantis noted after a speech at a park in Oldsmar, located just west of Tampa in early December as the Omicron variant was spreading.
“We are gonna protect your freedom to make your decisions,” he added, noting further if Sunshine State residents feel that they should self-quarantine, then “that is absolutely their decision in a free society.”
“You don’t impose Fauci-ism on the whole country or on a whole state. It’s wrong” DeSantis noted further.
DeSantis went on to reflect that governors in some states are already imposing new lockdowns and other restrictions because of the omicron variant, which is reportedly not nearly as potent as previous strains.
“It’s a free country, so when people are in bad environments – when you have states that don’t know how to fight crime, when you have states that are locking people down, mandating them, doing a lot of stupid things – people look for greener pastures,” he said.