‘Who governs?’: Gov. DeSantis further laments CDC’s no-sail order

ron deSantis
'Is everything subcontracted out to an unelected bureaucracy?'

Gov. Ron DeSantis lobbed his latest attack against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday, this time doubling down on his assertion that the administrative agency’s no-sail order is an act of gross government overreach.

“What is the proper role of government,” DeSantis implored during a press conference in Lakeland. “Can an unelected agency just mothball an entire industry for a year with no end in sight?”

The Republican Governor’s criticism comes roughly a week after Florida filed a lawsuit against the federal government contending the no-sail order levied against cruise ships is unlawful.

Florida is a major pillar in the country’s cruise industry, hosting a handful of the globe’s busiest ports and attracting millions of passengers in an average year.

When at full steam, the industry accounts for billions of dollars and thousands of jobs in Florida.

Still, speaking Friday, DeSantis said the no-sail order ripples far beyond economics.

“Who governs?,” DeSantis continued. “Do we govern ourselves to make these decisions for ourselves, or is everything subcontracted out to an unelected bureaucracy?”

Governance aside, DeSantis suggested the no-sail order is fruitless.

Those who wish to sail, he said, will simply choose to embark elsewhere.

“It may be out of the Bahamas instead of out of Florida, but the same people who would come to Florida are just going to go to the Bahamas and sail,” DeSantis said. “It’s going to be the same activity, so all it is (doing) is inhibiting us.”

The cruise and tourism industry at large have suffered huge losses amid the pandemic.

And while increased vaccine availability offered some optimism to the industry, the CDC has offered cruise lines little breathing room in their health guidelines.

The CDC first issued the order more than a year ago on March 13.

The lawsuit, meanwhile, calls for sailing to resume immediately.

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the state capital for Florida Politics. After a stint with the U.S. Army, Jason attended the University of Central Florida where he studied American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. Throw him a line at [email protected] or on Twitter at @JasonDelgadoFL.


One comment

  • Ron Ogden

    April 16, 2021 at 4:06 pm

    What an incredibly important question: who governs? That is the nut of it. Over the decades since Roosevelt, through Johnson and the rest of the Demis, America has been turned into a bureaucratic state where the power of the bureaucracy, what President Trump called “the deep state” is unrivaled. Donald J. Trump–bless him–tried to change that, and Joseph R. Biden–damn him–is doing his best to change it back. Why? Because when politicians control bureaucrats budges they can get the bureaucrats to do all the dirty work of brutal power.

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