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Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis told "Fox & Friends" Thursday that the state's beaches have either closed or if open, must abide by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on crowds and distancing for the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Why it matters: College students traveled in droves to the open beaches in Florida for spring break — ignoring the federal government's encouragement to maintain social distance and abstain from nonessential travel.

By the numbers: As expected, the most severe impacts from the coronavirus in the U.S. have been among people 85 years and older, but significant percentages of younger adults have also needed critical care, new federal data shows.

What DeSantis is saying:

“The message I think for spring breakers is that the party is over in Florida. You’re not going to be able to congregate on any beach in the state. Many of the hot spots that people like to go to, whether it’s Miami Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Clearwater Beach are closed entirely for the time being."
"We would tell those folks maybe come back next year when things are better, but that is not what we’re looking for.”

The big picture: President Trump has reinforced warnings from public health officials, saying, “We don’t want them gathering, and I see they do gather, including on beaches and in restaurants, young people. They don’t realize, and they’re feeling invincible.”

  • In Miami: The mayor ordered all parks and beaches to close. Clearwater and Naples beaches have also shut down.
  • DeSantis announced on Tuesday that all bars and nightclubs in the state will be shuttered for the next 30 days.
  • Still, Florida Democrats want DeSantis to do more and close all beaches in the state.

Go deeper: The coronavirus crisis enters a dangerous Phase 2

Go deeper

National Guard chief says it took 3 hours for Pentagon to grant Jan. 6 request

Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

William Walker, commanding general of the D.C. National Guard, will testify Wednesday that it took three hours and 19 minutes for Pentagon leadership to approve a request for National Guard assistance during the Jan. 6 Capitol attack, according to his prepared remarks.

Why it matters: The timeline over when National Guard requests were made and granted has been a key point of contention in congressional hearings examining the security failures surrounding the Capitol riots.

19 mins ago - World

International Criminal Court opens Israel-Palestine war crimes probe

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netnayahu has strongly objected to the investigation. Photo: Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images

International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Fatou Bensouda on Wednesday announced her intention to open an investigation into crimes allegedly committed in the Palestinian territories since 2014.

Why it matters: The investigation is expected to consider possible war crimes by Israel and Hamas during the 2014 war in Gaza, as well as the construction of West Bank settlements by Israel. It could sharply increase tensions between Israel, which fiercely opposes the probe, and Palestinian leaders, who requested it.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
57 mins ago - Energy & Environment

Exxon says it's well-positioned amid investor pressure

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

ExxonMobil said Wednesday that its oil-and-gas development plans will create good returns even at modest oil prices as the company looks to win back investor confidence after several rocky years.

Driving the news: The company, just ahead of an investor presentation this morning, said its investments are designed to generate returns of over 30% and touted its spending reductions.