Updated: Wednesday, April 1; 1:42 P.M. ET: Florida governo Ron DeSantis is finally issuing a state-wide stay-at-home order after facing increasing pressure and criticism as cases in the state have continued to spike, WCTV reports.
According to the report, the order will go into effect on Thursday at midnight and will only allow residents to leave their homes for essential services or activities.
Earlier: Florida is currently the only state with confirmed coronavirus cases passing 5,000 that is not under a stay-at-home order, and so far Governor Ron DeSantis, a Republican, has dug in his heels, refusing to do so, the Washington Post reports.
Meanwhile, as the Post notes, reports from the state Department of Health show the number of people testing positive for the virus has nearly doubled over the past four days, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 6,741 as of Wednesday morning, according to the data.
According to data from Johns Hopkins University, Florida is currently the state with the fifth most confirmed cases after New York, New Jersey, California and Michigan, all of which have issued sweeping stay-at-home orders.
DeSantis has ordered people in Southeast Florida to stay at home as part of his “safer at home” mandate. However, he still hesitates issuing the order for the entire state, citing advice from the White House.
The governor said that he had been in contact with the White House’s coronavirus task force and asked if it was recommending statewide orders.
“The task force has not recommended that to me,” he said at a news conference, according to the Post. “If any of those task force folks tell me that we should do X, Y or Z, of course we’re going to consider it.”
Trump called DeSantis a “great governor” who “knows exactly what he’s doing,” before calling Vice-President Mike Pence to talk about the subject.
“At the President’s direction, the White House coronavirus task force will continue to take the posture that we will defer to state and local health authorities on any measures that they deem appropriate,” Pence said.
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