Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at the Miami-Dade Emergency Operations Center on June 8. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Getty Images

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis told reporters on Tuesday that the state will not reinstate restrictions or close businesses to mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Why it matters: More than 50% of coronavirus infections in the U.S. are from states like Florida, Texas, California and Arizona, Axios' Marisa Fernandez reports.

Driving the news: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) urged people to stay home last week to fight the "rampant" spread of COVID-19, as the state paused its reopening. Abbott said in a Friday interview that he regretted how quickly bars were allowed to reopen in the state.

What he's saying: When asked by reporters on Tuesday if he would tell people to stay home as Abbott did, DeSantis explained that social distancing has been recommended throughout the state's reopening and that protecting the elderly and vulnerable are the state's priorities.

  • "We're not going back, closing things. I don't think that that's really what's driving it, people going to a business is not what's driving it," DeSantis said. "I think when you see the younger folks, I think a lot of it is more just social interactions, so that's natural."
  • "We're open, we know who we need to protect, most of the folks in those younger demographics, although we want them to be mindful of what's going on, are just simply much much less at risk than the folks who are in those older age groups."

Where it stands: Florida's current phase of reopening does not put a limit on how many visitors can be in stores or gyms and allows bars to serve half as many guests as they normally would, although the state has suspended on-premises consumption of alcohol at bars. Social distancing is encouraged at all businesses.

  • Daily fatalities reported in the state have declined since last Thursday, per the state's health department. Florida recorded its highest daily increase in coronavirus infections last Friday.
  • The state has reported over 3,500 deaths, more than 14,500 hospitalizations and over 152,00 confirmed cases.

Go deeper: Fauci says he's "concerned" about "disturbing surge" of infections in Texas, Florida and Arizona

Go deeper

Jul 2, 2020 - Health

Florida again breaks single-day record for new coronavirus cases

A health care worker administering a coronavirus test on June 27. Photo: Johnny Louis/Getty Images

The Florida Department of Health reported 10,109 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, the state's highest single-day increase yet, according to FOX 35 Orlando.

Why it matters: The massive surge in new cases comes just days after the state broke its previous record and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said the government will not reinstate restrictions or again close businesses to prevent the virus' spread.

Updated Jul 2, 2020 - Health

Michigan the latest state to order more coronavirus restrictions

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmerat the Detroit- Hamtramck assembly plant in Detroit in January. Photo: Jeff Kowalsky/AFP via Getty Images

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) signed an executive order closing indoor service at bars in south and central parts of the state "to protect the progress Michigan has made against COVID-19," she said in a statement Wednesday.

Why it matters: It's the latest state to readjust or pause reopening plans as COVID-19 cases soar across the U.S. Daily coronavirus case numbers surpassed 50,000 for the first time on Wednesday.

Updated Jul 2, 2020 - Health

Texas governor mandates face masks in public spaces

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued an executive order Thursday requiring all Texans to wear a face covering in public in counties with 20 or more positive coronavirus cases.

Why it matters: It's a dramatic reversal by the Republican governor that underscores the severity of the outbreak in Texas, which set a single-day record on Wednesday with more than 8,000 confirmed new cases. On June 3, Abbott issued an executive order banning local governments from imposing fines on people who don't wear masks in public.