Ron DeSantis defends his claim that coronavirus hasn't killed people under 25: 'Not in Florida'

But at least in Florida, says the Governor, it doesn’t kill them.

Ron DeSantis defends his claim that coronavirus hasn't killed people under 25: 'Not in Florida'
Screengrab via Florida Channel

Gov. Ron DeSantis clarified on Friday a statement he made that got national scrutiny the previous day.

A widely-reported claim that he made, saying that people under 25 hadn’t died from COVID-19, in fact only applied to people in Florida, DeSantis said.

On Thursday, DeSantis said at a Tallahassee media availability that, “this particular pandemic is one where, I don’t think nationwide there’s been a single fatality under 25. For whatever reason it just doesn’t seem to threaten, you know, kids.”

At least five people under the age of 25 have died from COVID-19. However, DeSantis said, those deaths were not in Florida.

“Not in Florida,” DeSantis said Friday. “In Florida, we’ve had no fatalities under 25.”

“85% plus of our fatalities are 65 and up,” DeSantis said. “That’s just the reality.”

DeSantis’ prior comments also drew criticism for its comparison to the flu.

“And we lose in Florida between five and 10 kids a year for the flu. This one, for whatever reason, much more dangerous if you’re 65 and plus than the flu, no doubt about that, if you’re younger it just hasn’t had an impact. So that should factor into how we’re viewing this.”

“I think the data on that has been 100% consistent,” he continued Thursday. “I’ve not seen any deviation on that.”

DeSantis famously was late closing beaches last month, even through Spring Break bacchanalia that proved to be destinations for coeds from across the country.

DeSantis continues to prioritize protections for those who are “older” with underlying conditions.

“The protective efforts, of course, you have to be careful with somebody who is elderly, who has a compromised immune system … diabetes” or is “very obese,” the Governor added.

“Those folks who, when they acquire the virus, are much more likely to be hospitalized,” DeSantis said.

Of course, young people are getting the virus.

But at least in Florida, says the Governor, it doesn’t kill them.

The sentiment was disputed by a member of Pres. Donald Trump‘s Coronavirus Task Force Friday.

“Yes, people under 25 have died of coronavirus disease in the United States of America,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said.

This article originally appeared in Florida Politics.

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