DeSantis won’t move on masks as Florida COVID wards swell

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is refusing to back down from his position on mask mandates even as the state again broke its record for COVID-19 hospitalizations.

The Republican governor insisted Tuesday that the spike will be short-lived. He expects hospitalizations to drop in the next couple weeks after the summer heat and humidity ease and Floridians spend more time outdoors.

With the much more contagious delta variant now spreading exponentially, Florida hit 11,515 hospitalized patients Tuesday, breaking last year’s record for the third straight day.

That’s 11 times more than the number hospitalized in mid-June.

About 2,400 patients are now in intensive care.

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