Ohio Republican Governor Mike DeWine warned on Thursday that the coronavirus “is after all of us” and it “doesn’t matter” whether people vote for Donald Trump or Joe Biden. His comments came as the U.S. continued to wait for the results of the 2020 election and broke new records for COVID-19 cases.
During a briefing on Thursday, DeWine said Ohians would have to focus their efforts on the virus once the election was over. “It comes after all of us,” he said. That day, Ohio reported 4,961 new cases after passing the 4,000 mark for the first time on Tuesday. According to the Ohio Department of Health, a total of 235,170 cases have been reported in the state since the pandemic began, and 5,461 people have died.
The increase in cases has been accompanied by a rise in hospitalizations, which have increased by 55 percent in the past two weeks, DeWine twittered on Thursday. About 541 people were in intensive care on Thursday, up from an earlier high of 533 in April, he said.
We continue to see an increase in the number of #COVID19 patients admitted to the hospital, in the ICU and on ventilators. There are currently 2,075 patients, an increase of 55% of hospitalized patients compared to two weeks ago. There are 541 people in the intensive care unit. The highest number so far was 533 in April. pic.twitter.com/TMr3qwgp58
– Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) November 5, 2020
“This virus doesn’t care if we voted for Donald Trump, it doesn’t care if we voted for Joe Biden,” DeWine said at the press conference.
On Friday, the race that had dwarfed the COVID 19 pandemic in the news cycle was too close to call, with 264 votes for Biden and 214 for Trump. The ballots were still counted in the western states of Nevada, Arizona, the southern states of Georgia and North Carolina, and the eastern state of Pennsylvania.
As the votes were counted, new COVID cases were also counted. On Thursday, the U.S. broke its diagnosis record for the second day in a row, with 120,276 cases, according to Reuters, compared to 102,591 on Wednesday.
According to Reuters, 20 out of 50 states set new records for daily cases on Thursday, a new high since October 30, when 16 states reported record increases in one day.
For months, the U.S. has had the highest number of cases and deaths with over 9.6 million cases of coronavirus and over 235,000 deaths. According to Reuters, one in 18 new cases and one in 11 new deaths reported worldwide every day occurs in the United States.
Midwestern and western states, such as Ohio, have become the latest epicenter of the U.S. outbreak after the Northeast was devastated in spring and the Sun Belt in summer.