DeSantis Calls For Permanent COVID Mandate Ban In Florida
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has proposed a permanent ban on mandates related to COVID-19 in the state, from mask and vaccine requirements in schools and the government to prohibiting private employers from enacting mask mandates or hiring and firing based on vaccination status.
The governor’s proposal, dubbed “Prescribe Freedom,” asks the GOP-controlled state legislature to make permanent Florida’s bans on COVID-19 mandates, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.
DeSantis signed the existing bans last year during a special session of the state legislature, and the move to solidify them comes ahead of an expiration date set for June, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
The latest proposal asserts that making the bans permanent would protect Floridians’ “right to disagree with the preferred narrative of the medical community” and gives more room for religious views.
“When the world lost its mind, Florida was a refuge of sanity, serving strongly as freedom’s linchpin. These measures will ensure Florida remains this way and will provide landmark protections for free speech for medical practitioners,” DeSantis said in a release.
The governor, who is rumored to be floating a 2024 presidential run, has appeared to try to position himself to the right of former President Trump, who has already announced his latest White House bid.
Trump, who holds a 17-point lead over DeSantis in a hypothetical GOP primary match-up, faced harsh criticism from some conservatives over his handling of the pandemic.
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