Covid-19 has more variants than a Marvel comic villain; with the Omicron variant quickly moving through communities across the country, people are turning to elected officials for action. Black lawmakers in Florida are calling out Gov. Ron DeSantis for allegedly going MIA during the latest surge.
On Wednesday, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings spoke about the strain on local governments after the Republican-controlled state legislature and DeSantis passed new restrictions limiting the ability of local governments and private businesses to take action against the surge.
“Our residents, all Florida residents, should be outraged, and they should ask the question, ‘Where is our state? Where is our governor? Where is Ron DeSantis now?’ When is the last time you saw the governor do a press briefing on COVID-19?” Demings told the Associated Press.
Rep. Travaris McCurdy also questioned the lack of government response.
“Shame on @GovRonDeSantis for the lack of any state-run testing sites or state assistance on locally run sites amid the omicron surge,” McCurdy tweeted.
Rep. Angie Nixon chimed in about the governor’s vacation in the middle of a national crisis.
“Black Women don’t get to take vacations during times of crisis. Hell, we barely take them during regular times,” Nixon tweeted. “A member of our immediate family just passed, my granny has COVID now AND I’m still assisting constituents @GovRonDeSantis.”
Speaking with NewsOne, Nixon directly challenged DeSantis’s leadership and failure in caring for all Floridians equally.
“In a time when Florida’s COVID numbers are yet again on the rise, Ron DeSantis is missing in action,” Nixon said. “This governor has a consistent track record of failing to show up in times of crisis.”
Nixon was among the legislators challenging DeSantis’ decision to invest in the Regeneron treatment instead of addressing ongoing issues with vaccine equity. While parts of Nixon’s district struggled with vaccine equity and access to testing, DeSantis was pushing the more expensive treatment.
DeSantis has been in a race to the bottom alongside Gov. Tate Reeves of Mississippi and Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia. Local news reports indicate Florida has been breaking records with the spread of Omicron.
And yet, Friday morning DeSantis was tweeting about High School Football with several Twitter users noting that the season ended two weeks ago. Communities across the state are in dire need, and the governor posted a highlight reel featuring him enjoying high school football.
The tweet was posted as DeSantis trended on Twitter with many wondering where in the world is Florida’s governor.
“It’s apparent that he has placed the health and safety of Floridians on the back burner while attempting to start his bid for president of the United States,” Nixon said.