It’s easy sometimes for guttersnipe politicians like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to confuse his exaggerated political attacks with the facts, especially when it comes to the pandemic. Cuomo let loose an epic hysterical rant against the Trump administration for not doing enough to stop the variant of COVID-19 in Great Britain from entering the United States.
What makes his rant so weird is that his fact-free, spittle-flecked diatribe is largely unproven and based on models of transmission, not actual figures.
“Now there’s a second strain and it came from the U.K., again,” he said during a press conference Tuesday. “Secretary Azar, Dr. Redfield, how can you explain to the American people your lack of action, your negligence, your irresponsibility – 140 countries banned people from the U.K. and you did nothing.
“You know there are viral strains in other countries now – you know that is a fact – why wouldn’t you mandate testing, how many times do you have to learn the same lesson over and over, what happened to competent leadership in government?”
Someone should give Andy an enema. Maybe that will calm him down some.
The facts are simple: Since last March, the United States has had a travel ban in place for travelers from the UK. Citizens and permanent residents can still come home, however, so is Cuomo saying that we should prevent United States citizens from traveling to their own country? Anyone who comes into the United States from overseas must self-quarantine for 14 days. Cuomo could bitch about enforcing the quarantine but who’s going to do it? Him? I don’t see him volunteering to use state troopers to chase down airline passengers who might not be quarantining.
“Anyone who was exposed or anyone who was exposed to someone who was exposed, please contact us,” Cuomo urged. “There is nothing to be ashamed of, this is a virus – it travels – but we have to know. Containment is vitally important here – this is a virus we have to be extra careful with.”
Is there anyone in the U.S. “ashamed” of getting sick? Cuomo just created a problem that doesn’t exist.
The practical problems in instituting a “travel ban” make implementing one a massive undertaking.
- At no point during the pandemic has the US restricted entry to the US for citizens and permanent residents, and I don’t see that changing now; in other words, the current UK travel restrictions already accomplish that
- If the US banned flights between the two countries, that wouldn’t accomplish much, since it would just cause people to connect; it’s not like many people are currently flying between the US and UK for leisure
- It’s one thing if the US had ever had an actual international testing and quarantine program, but it hasn’t and that’s not something that will change overnight; so it’s not like the US could even force Americans returning from the UK to quarantine, beyond any of the current unenforced self-quarantines we see in the US
In short, Andrew Cuomo is full of it. He’s gotten so used to trashing the Trump administration that his knee-jerk reaction to the new COVID variant isn’t surprising.
Cuomo is hearing what he wants to about this new coronavirus strain. While it’s true that researchers are pretty sure it’s more contagious, there’s also evidence it’s no deadlier and doesn’t lead to more severe cases than the unmutated coronavirus. The virus surge in Great Britain could also be due to the lifting of severe restrictions in July (Prime Minister Boris Johnson reinstituted severe lockdown rules this week). Taken together, the new variant and coming out of lockdown this past summer has helped the new variant along.
It will soon be all over the United States. What’s Cuomo going to do about it? His own response won’t save many lives and will make this rant against Trump seem petty and small.