WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis visited the White House Tuesday to share updates on the state’s coronavirus response directly with President Donald Trump.
“(He’s done) a spectacular job in Florida,” President Trump said.
During the Oval Office meeting, Gov. DeSantis was asked by reporters why he decided to close the state later than others. DeSantis said his approach to addressing the outbreak was “tailored and measured” compared to other states.
“What have the results been? You look at some of the most draconian orders that have been issued in some of these states and compare Florida,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis touted the number of tests performed in the state and said the death rate “has been lower than people would have expected.”
During the meeting with President Trump, DeSantis said available tests exceed the demand. But one lawmaker who represents Tampa says it’s still not enough.
“Our local health experts are saying we’ve got to broaden the testing effort,” Congresswoman Kathy Castor (D-FL) said Tuesday.
Castor said testing is the most important step they can take as a state to get the economy open again. She said it’s a choice that’s not to be taken lightly.
“When and how to open the economy is really a life or death decision,” Castor said.
Castor said as the governor looks toward reopening the state, he needs statewide feedback.
“He needs to now build a bipartisan and community-wide effort so that everyone is part of this,” she said.
DeSantis has said he will update everyone on the future of Florida’s reopening on Wednesday.
The state’s current stay-at-home order is set to expire on Thursday.