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GOP Sen. Rick Scott begs people to get off Florida's beaches: 'What are you thinking?'

Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), the former governor of Florida, is desperately begging people to stop crowding the beaches amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Scott spoke on CNN on Thursday following reports that warnings from health officials are falling on deaf ears among some who are still flooding beaches in Florida. In a viral video that drew outrage online Wednesday, CBS News interviewed young spring breakers in Miami who scoffed at the dangers of gathering in large crowds during the pandemic. "If I get corona, I get corona," said one. "At the end of the day, I'm not gonna let it stop me from partying."

"Get off the beach," Scott said on Thursday. "I mean, unless you can figure out how to completely be isolated from anybody else ... individuals have got to take responsibility."

Scott scolded those still gathering on beaches in large crowds this week, saying, "What are you thinking? Stop doing it! Now!"

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has so far not ordered the state's beaches to close. "What we're going to be doing for the statewide floor for beaches, we're going to be applying the CDC guidance of no group on a beach more than 10 and you have to have distance apart if you're going to be out there," DeSantis said this week, NBC News reports.

Scott didn't specifically say whether the beaches should all be closed but urged officials to "do everything they can to stop people from being on the beach." He added, "if we don't individually take responsibility, this is going to be much worse, and we're going to lose many more of our loved ones." Brendan Morrow