MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz appeared on CNN expressing her discontent with how Governor Ron DeSantis has handled the coronavirus pandemic and feels he is to blame for the current surge of cases in the state and for the vaccine hesitancy.

Florida now leads the nation in coronavirus cases.

READ MORE: Gov. DeSantis Doubles Down On No School Mask Mandates, Says He's Protecting Parental Rights

“What I think explains the high infection rate is that we have a governor who has not taken COVID seriously from the very beginning. You know, he is essentially right now treating it like a joke. He’s got campaign merchandise on his Web site saying ‘Don’t Fauci My Florida.’ And we’ve had nearly 40,000 Floridians die of COVID,” she said on CNN. “And look, I would rather see us ‘Fauci our Florida’ than have people go through death by DeSantis,” she added.

Wasserman Schultz blamed DeSantis for banning local governments from implementing mask mandates and social distancing requirements.

“You just can’t make this up. So that’s where the blame lies. At his feet,” she said.

READ MORE: Section Of Turnpike Closed Due To Overturned Tanker Truck, Fuel Spill

Christina Pushaw, the governor’s press secretary, said the “claims by Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz are shockingly misinformed.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis attributed the increase to a seasonal pattern.

“We knew it was going to be low in May and it was, and we know as we got to the end of June, July would go up, because that’s what happened last year,” DeSantis said at a press conference.

Wasserman Schultz also said social media platforms like Facebook have to do a better job of not allowing COVID-19 misinformation.

MORE NEWS: Florida Not Expected To Join Biden's Plan To Pay $100 To Newly Vaccinated Residents

“Facebook needs to do a lot more, and our social media companies need to do a lot more, to take down these disinformation websites, take down the false information that their own algorithms allow to spread” because anti-vaccine “disinformation spreads much faster” than accurate information, she said.

CBSMiami.com Team