Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh and CNN anchor Chris Cuomo got into an on-air brawl Monday evening over the coronavirus pandemic, and it did not go well for the younger brother of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.
The younger Cuomo immediately addressed new COVID-19 cases in the states, prompting Murtaugh to cite the China travel ban and advances in therapeutics and vaccine development.
Cuomo responded by talking about Biden’s plan to tackle the virus (does anyone know what it is, aside from blaming Trump?) but things really got heated when Murtaugh dropped a truth bomb on Cuomo when he invoked the anchor’s brother, Governor Andrew Cuomo, and his past praise of the Trump administration for providing everything they needed.
Cuomo denied this, of course. “No. He said, ‘I went to the federal government. They helped me with things. They did not help with everything. They’re still not helping,'” he claimed, even though his brother did say back in April, “[Trump] has delivered for New York. He has.”
But things really even more heated when Murtaugh accused Cuomo of asking “self-righteous questions and talking about people taking it seriously.”
“Does this look like a couple of guys who were taking it seriously?” Murtaugh asked. He then held up a print of a screenshot of the infamous exchange between the two brothers on CNN back in May.”You had your brother on for the Cuomo Brothers Comedy Hour, joking about the size of the Q-Tip that you would need for his nose to take the test.”
At this point, Cuomo started to melt down and desperately tried to defend his brother’s COVID-19 record.
EPIC! Trump campaign comms director Tim Murtaugh calls out Chris "Fredo" Cuomo for making a mockery of the coronavirus pandemic when he whipped out a giant q-tip and refused to address his brother's (NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo) nursing home deaths.https://t.co/wUC5Atokpu pic.twitter.com/HFaLF3WRUR
— Nicholas Fondacaro (@NickFondacaro) October 27, 2020
You can watch the Cuomo Brothers Comedy Hour in the clip below and ask yourself just how seriously they were taking the pandemic.
Perhaps worse than the Cuomo skit was the blanket defense of Governor Cuomo’s record—the worst in the nation and the entire world.
Let’s not forget, President Trump issued stay-at-home guidelines on March 16, 2020, but New York’s lockdown wasn’t ordered until March 22—a full six days later, which was after San Francisco shut down, and three days after the state of California. Even Mayor de Blasio (whose response to the pandemic in New York City was abominable) had suggested shutting the state down five days earlier than Governor Cuomo actually did. By the time Cuomo finally shut the state down, coronavirus cases were exploding, “with the number of confirmed cases at 15,000, doubling every three or four days.”
Governor Cuomo was completely unaware of his state’s actual needs. He infamously requested 30,000-40,000 ventilators to help see New York through the pandemic and complained when the federal government couldn’t provide that many. He called out Trump by saying, “You pick the 26,000 people who are going to die.”
New York ultimately needed fewer than 6,000 ventilators to get them through the peak of the pandemic. Eventually, New York started giving extra ventilators to other states that needed them more. But Cuomo’s coronavirus response will most likely be remembered for his deadly nursing home policy. Which Chris Cuomo actually claimed never happened.
But it did happen. On March 25, Cuomo ordered nursing homes to accept patients regardless of their coronavirus status. Even then it was well known that the elderly were more vulnerable to the virus, so having patients who tested positive for the coronavirus in nursing homes allowed it to spread, as Cuomo put it, “like fire through dry grass.”
Despite this, Cuomo defended the policy. Nursing homes “don’t have a right to object. That is the rule and that is the regulation and they have to comply with that,” Cuomo said during a daily briefing. He finally rescinded the order on May 11, but the damage had been done. Nursing home patients represent a mere .46 percent of the United States population but account for at least 43 percent of all coronavirus deaths. Cuomo enabled a massive outbreak in New York nursing homes and then tried to cover it up.
Cuomo dismissed criticism of the policy. “Older people, vulnerable people are going to die from this virus. That is going to happen despite whatever you do. Because with all our progress as a society, we can’t keep everyone alive.”
Imagine if Trump had said that. Yet Chris Cuomo, an anchor on CNN, is actually trying to claim that his brother, the governor of New York, never actually sent nursing home residents who tested positive for COVID-19 back to nursing homes.
Matt Margolis is the author of the new book Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump, and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis