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Governor Ron DeSantis Questions Why Orlando International Airport is Still Open

Governor Ron DeSantis speaks with Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings. Photo: Danielle Prieur

Governor Ron DeSantis is raising concerns about whether Orlando International Airport should continue operating. He says the number of flights from New York jumped after leaders there issued a stay-at-home order. 

At a briefing in Orlando, the governor said the number of flights from New York to OIA jumped from zero to more than 20 after leaders there told people to stay home. 

He says the issue of whether to close the airport is a federal one. 

“As soon as Italy began having the outbreak, they shut off the flights from Italy. And then all of Europe when Europe started getting the outbreak. So, we have an even bigger outbreak in our own country in the New York City area and yet the flights have accelerated.”

But DeSantis said a statewide stay-at-home order would do more harm than good.

He gave school closures as an example of the public health and economic consequences these decisions can have.

“So, you need to look to say, “Ok. If the schools are closed, what stress does that put on the parents?” If you have someone who is working in healthcare, how are they going to be able to take care of the kids?”

DeSantis said domestic violence, child abuse, and mental health problems have been on the rise as more people stay home from class and work. 

Seventy-seven COVID-19 cases have been diagnosed in Orange County. The spike prompted leaders to announce a two week stay-at-home order in the area. 

Two drive-through testing sites opened this week on Alafaya Trail and the Orange County Convention Center. 

If you’d like to listen to the story, click on the clips above.

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »