Charlie Crist says he is ‘open’ to masks mandate, establishing COVID as key problem in race in opposition to DeSantis

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A current assertion from a Democratic candidate eyeing the Florida governor’s seat has opened the door for COVID-19 to stay a central problem within the race in opposition to sitting Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis.

A video obtained by Day by day Put up Digital reveals former Florida governor and present Congressman Charlie Crist, D-Fla., telling attendees at a marketing campaign occasion in Wilton Manors, Florida, that if he had been elected, he could be open to a statewide masks mandate.

An occasion attendee requested, “Congressman, thank you for coming. You mentioned the pandemic. Hopefully it is behind us. But as Florida’s governor, would you be open to mandating or regulating masks?”

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“I would be open to doing what scientists advise — not political scientists,” Crist responded. “Yes. I just read an article this morning. I’m glad you brought it up. So I’m going to the airport right after this. I’m going to Orlando, and I’m going to wear a mask on the plane. You don’t have to anymore, but I’m going to because Florida is experiencing an uptick that began this week. And it’s not even the Omicron B2. It’s a new variant.”

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.
(2014 Getty Photos)

This is not the primary time Crist has signaled help for COVID mandates. In July 2021, he stated that he would help masks mandates and lockdowns, much like strict measures in place in the beginning of the pandemic.

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A Florida choose earlier this month tossed out the Biden administration’s Heart for Illness Management and Prevention masks mandate for public transportation passengers.

Crist’s statements on masks come after his Democratic major opponent Nikki Fried tweeted help for an finish to the federal masks mandate.

Earlier in April, a maskless Fried gestured a peace signal towards her selfie digital camera in a single tweet. 

“Peace out to the TSA mask mandate, but also peace and respect to others, whether wearing a mask or not,” she captioned the tweet.

“I’ll read all your takes, but the mandates are dropped, vaccines are working, things are getting back to normal, and it’s okay for a Democrat to say it — because we made it possible. I love y’all,” she wrote.

Nikki Fried, Florida commissioner of agriculture and a 2022 Democratic candidate for Florida governor, arrives for a ceremony with President Biden. 

Nikki Fried, Florida commissioner of agriculture and a 2022 Democratic candidate for Florida governor, arrives for a ceremony with President Biden. 
(Drew Angerer/Getty Photos)

DeSantis, who by no means imposed a statewide masks mandate at any level within the pandemic and is operating for a second time period as governor in 2022, has adamantly opposed implementing strict COVID restrictions. 

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“Florida has led the nation in standing up to misguided federal government policies and fighting back against heavy-handed mandates that have no scientific backing,” he lately said after the CDC’s federal transportation masks mandate was invalidated.

Florida GOP Vice Chairman Christian Ziegler advised Day by day Put up Digital, “Charlie Crist being ‘open’ to imposing mask mandates is one of the most out-of-touch positions Crist has ever taken, which is really saying something.”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during the welcome segment of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 26, 2021. 

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks in the course of the welcome phase of the Conservative Political Motion Convention (CPAC) in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 26, 2021. 
(REUTERS/Joe Skipper/File Picture)

“Americans are flocking to Florida, and the Republican Party of Florida is dominating in voter registration due in large part to Governor DeSantis fighting back and protecting us from ridiculous, anti-science mask mandates and COVID tyrants like Charlie Crist,” Ziegler continued.

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Current polling discovered that the majority Individuals (62%) don’t need masks mandates to return and solely 34% supported them. As well as, solely 12% of Republicans stated they’d help extra COVID restrictions at this level within the pandemic.

In March, Day by day Put up Digital reported that registered Republican voters now outnumber Democrats by over 100,000 in Florida for the primary time within the state’s historical past.

The Crist marketing campaign and the Florida Democratic Celebration didn’t reply to Day by day Put up Digital’s requests for touch upon how they view the problem of COVID mandates within the gubernatorial race.

It’s unclear if the Florida Democratic Celebration will again Fried or Crist on the problem. Florida’s major election is not till the top of August.

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