Coronavirus updates: City to legally challenge Newsom’s California beach closures

ABC News Corona Virus Government. Response

More than 63,000 people have died of COVID-19 in the U.S.

A pandemic of the novel coronavirus has now killed more than 233,000 people worldwide.

Over 3.2 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some governments are hiding the scope of their nations’ outbreaks.

Since the first cases were detected in China in December, the United States has become the worst-affected country, with more than 1 million diagnosed cases and at least 63,019 deaths.

Tune into ABC at 1 p.m. ET and ABC News Live at 4 p.m. ET every weekday for special coverage of the novel coronavirus with the full ABC News team, including the latest news, context and analysis.

Today’s biggest developments:

  • City to legally challenge California beach closure order
  • US coronavirus deaths surpass 63,000
  • Here’s how the news is developing today. All times Eastern. Please refresh this page for updates.

    3:10 a.m.: City votes to legally challenge Newsom beach closure order

    The Huntington Beach City Council voted to pursue a legal challenge to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s beach closure order Thursday night.

    “Governor Newsom’s mandate to close all beaches in Orange County today was a jarring decision that significantly impacts us here in Huntington Beach,” Mayor Lyn Semeta said in a statement. “Given that Orange County has among the lowest per-capita COVID-19 death rates in California, the action by the state prioritizes politics over data, in direct contradiction of the Governor’s stated goal to allow science and facts to guide our response to this horrible global pandemic.”

    The council voted 5-2 to seek “any and all legal actions necessary” to challenge Newsom’s order.

    Newsom said photos of overcrowding at beaches with little social distancing gave him no choice but to protect public health by ordering the beaches close.

    “Everyone saw those images and we’re all concerned about that. … That’s what ultimately led to this decision,” Newsom said Thursday.

    California has more than 50,000 diagnosed COVID-19 cases, with at least 2,036 deaths across the state.

    What to know about coronavirus:

  • How it started and how to protect yourself: Coronavirus explained
  • What to do if you have symptoms: Coronavirus symptoms
  • Tracking the spread in the U.S. and worldwide: Coronavirus map
  • ABC News’ Marilyn Heck contributed to this report.

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