DeSantis warns he’ll fight COVID cruise ship restrictions in Supreme Court

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said this week that he is “absolutely going to pursue” legal options in the battle against cruise ship COVID-19 restrictions put in place by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), taking the case to the Supreme Court if necessary.

“I think that most courts at this point have had their limit with the CDC issuing these dictates without a firm statutory basis. So I’m confident that we’d win on the merits at the full 11th Circuit,” DeSantis said, according to The Hill.

“Honestly, I’m confident we’d win at the U.S. Supreme Court,” the GOP governor added.

Court has concerns

“All of the cruise ships at issue here are foreign-flagged vessels that must stop at one or more foreign ports during each voyage,” U.S. Department of Justice attorneys wrote in the July 7 motion for a stay, according to CBS4 Miami.

“Cruise travel has the potential to introduce COVID-19 variants of concern into the United States from countries such as the Bahamas, Mexico, Honduras, Saint Maarten, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Aruba, and Saint Kitts and Nevis.”

“The CDC has authority to make and enforce such regulations as in its judgment are necessary to prevent the introduction, transmission or spread of communicable disease from a foreign country into the United States,” the motion read.

Why it matters

“The resumption of cruise ship activity has been a political flashpoint in Florida. The industry is worth billions of dollars for the state’s economy and Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has aggressively campaigned for its resumption,” Axios reported.

As DeSantis seeks to continue growing the state’s economy while fighting back against government-issued COVID-19 dictates, he faces numerous legal hurdles regarding efforts beyond his state.

The next step in the governor’s legal fight will involve an August hearing. Unfortunately, for DeSantis, the clock is ticking and every passing day the restrictions remain in place, the state’s booming tourism economy takes a hit.

The governor’s appeals will continue, as he vowed, to the Supreme Court if necessary, but there’s no telling what President Joe Biden’s administration might pull out of its hat before then.

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