Irked by the sight of scholars carrying masks at his press convention Wednesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis inspired them to take away the facial coverings, calling their use “COVID theater.”

“You wouldn’t have to put on these masks,” DeSantis mentioned in video captured by WFLA Information Channel 8, Tampa’s NBC station. “Please take them off. Actually, it isn’t doing something. We have gotta cease with this Covid theater. So in case you wanna put on it, superb, however that is ridiculous.”

DeSantis then shakes his head in obvious frustration earlier than launching into the press convention on the College of South Florida, which he visited to tout $20 million in funding for cybersecurity coaching. Not less than two folks eliminated their masks on the governor’s request, in accordance with the video.

The governor has outlawed masks mandates in Florida colleges. His remarks to the scholars is proof of his disdain for even voluntary mask-wearing, and mistrust of the science behind it.

The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention launched new masks steering final week that now not recommends indoor masks carrying for most individuals in lots of elements of the nation – locations the place the “COVID-19 group degree” is taken into account low or medium.

The CDC nonetheless considers a lot of Florida – together with the Tampa space the place DeSantis was visiting Wednesday – to have a excessive COVID-19 group degree, although, and recommends everybody put on masks indoors in these areas when in public areas.

DeSantis continues responsible Biden for Russian invasion of Ukraine

DeSantis additionally continued responsible President Joe Biden for the Russian invasion of Ukraine throughout the press occasion, whereas praising the nation’s fighters Wednesday and taking a dig at France.

DeSantis mentioned Russian President Vladimir Putin probably determined to invade Ukraine after witnessing how the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan performed out.

“I imagine that the choice to enter Ukraine was one which was in all probability made final summer season as he is watching what was occurring in Afghanistan… how Biden dealt with that,” DeSantis mentioned throughout an occasion in Tampa.

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis uses Russian invasion of Ukraine as opportunity to attack President Biden.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis makes use of Russian invasion of Ukraine as alternative to assault President Biden.

DeSantis has echoed Ukraine speaking factors adopted by many GOP leaders, blaming Biden for the invasion and calling for extra vitality manufacturing in the USA to restrict the leverage Putin has due to the world’s reliance on Russian oil and gas. The governor additionally touched on the Ukrainian resistance Wednesday.

“If you see folks which might be keen to battle, I imply it’s inspiring to see these folks simply seize rifles who’re civilians and going on the market and preventing to thrust back the Russian Military,” DeSantis mentioned. “Quite a lot of different locations around the globe, they only fold the minute there’s any sort of adversity. I imply may you think about in the event that they went into France, would they do something to place up a battle? Most likely not.”

DeSantis criticized ‘authoritarian rule’ in locations which have extra restrictive COVID public well being measures

Final week, on the day Russia launched the invasion of Ukraine, DeSantis criticized “authoritarian rule” in places such as Canada and Australia which have extra restrictive COVID-19 public well being measures.

DeSantis additionally supplied his rebuttal to the State of the Union speech Biden delivered Tuesday.

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Biden mentioned that preventing inflation is a “high precedence” and tried to steer his celebration from unpopular positions on immigration and police, saying he desires to “fund the police” and safe the southern border.

DeSantis mentioned Biden’s insurance policies contributed to inflation and immigration points, and accused his administration of being smooth on crime.

“So many of those issues have been created by Biden and his administration since he’s develop into president,” DeSantis mentioned.

Comply with Herald-Tribune Political Editor Zac Anderson on Twitter at @zacjanderson. He could be reached at zac.anderson@heraldtribune.com

This text initially appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: DeSantis tells Tampa students face masks are ‘COVID theater’


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