California has surpassed New York for the most coronavirus cases in the U.S., surpassing 409,000 after setting a record on Tuesday for the state’s most confirmed new cases in a single day since the start of the pandemic.
California, with about 40 million residents, has roughly twice the population of New York, and its deaths from the virus, 7,870, remain far below the East Coast state’s grim tally of 25,068, according to websites run by each state. Still, the shift shows how the pandemic is changing as the virus sweeps across the U.S., with California’s cases doubling in the past month alone.
The surge of cases comes as California reopened much of its economy in May. Since then, Governor Gavin Newsom has imposed new restrictions on about 35 counties — including banning indoor worship services and in-person instruction at schools.
“We are a state, again, the size of 21 states combined, so it’s not surprising now in some respects as we begin to reopen key sectors of our economy … that our numbers would start to go up,” Newsom said Wednesday.
His comments came as California on Wednesday reported a record 12,807 new confirmed infections, bringing the state’s total to 413,576 since the pandemic began. That tops the official toll of 408,806 in New York, the initial U.S. epicenter of the virus.
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