The Florida governor blamed younger people for the dramatic increase in coronavirus cases, arguing that it is impossible to stop his party.
"If you look at that age group of 25 to 34, that is by far the leading age group on positive tests," Governor Ron DeSantis said at a news conference on Sunday, as seen on Wink News.
He insisted that "it cannot be controlled" because "they are younger people".
"They are going to do what they are going to do," DeSantis said.
Cell phone data partially supports the governor's theory: Florida rebels had begun leaving their homes more frequently even before reopens began on May 4, the Tampa Bay Times said.
The bars are also partly to blame, DeSantis said, denouncing "widespread noncompliance" in crowded establishments that "dropped" the safety guidelines.
"It has always been because they packed so many people and created a kind of environment that we are trying to avoid," said DeSantis. "Caution was thrown into the wind and then we are where we are."
Even with a record number of infections, with 8,500 new confirmed cases and 29 deaths on Sunday, the governor insists that the age group trend makes the pandemic not as severe as it seems because the disease does not pose as great a threat to younger people.
An intensive care doctor who appeared alongside him, Jason Foland, said many appeared to have a weaker strain of the virus, which he said could also explain why it was spreading so widely.
"If you get sick very quickly with aggressive tension, you are not out of the community and you are not spreading it," Foland said.
"If you have symptoms much like the common cold, you're spreading it all over the place."
Despite claiming that he could not control the younger population, DeSantis urged them to be considerate of "most vulnerable" community members.
In contrast, older people in the sun state have been "very, very diligent," DeSantis said.
"I know it has happened now, we are in the third month of this, and it can be exhausting, we just ask you to maintain that diligence," he said.
In total, Florida now has more than 141,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 3,400 deaths.