(USA Features) Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said Friday he had no plans to postpose or cancel his state’s 2020 primaries due to the coronavirus outbreak, noting that Americans cast ballots during our greatest upheaval.
“We’re definitely voting. They voted during the Civil War. We’re going to vote,” the Republican governor said during a Friday press conference.
DeSantis noted that a potentially depressed voter turnout over concerns about the virus isn’t likely to alter the results, as President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are expected to handily win the GOP and Democratic races, respectively.
“The primaries, the way this has worked out quite frankly, are not going to be cliffhangers,” he said, noting that 2 million Floridians have already cast ballots via mail.
Florida Secretary of State Laurel Lee also assured the public about voting Tuesday.
“Unlike concerts, sporting events, or other mass gatherings where large groups of people travel long distances to congregate in a confined space for an extended period of time, polling locations see people from a nearby community coming into and out of the building for a short duration,” Lee said in a statement.
DeSantis did advise local officials to move voting stations out of assisted living facilities since older Americans are far more prone to fall ill from COVID-19.
“We need to be erring on the side of safety. I don’t want people going into these assisted living facilities if they’re not part of that community,” he said.
Last week, the Democratic governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards, signed an executive order delaying his state’s April 4 primary until June 20 because of the outbreak, becoming the first state to do so.