In two separate appearances on cable news, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo made the surprise claim that an “incompetent government kills people.”
What was surprising was that Cuomo wasn’t referring to his own bungled response to the pandemic. He was specifically referring to Donald Trump and the federal government’s response.
Cuomo’s fatal order that COVID-positive patients were to be returned to nursing homes resulted in more than 6,600 deaths before he finally changed the policy two months later.
I guess that sort of slipped his mind.
Cuomo first made the claim in a friendly interview with MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace on Tuesday, insisting that former President Donald Trump and an incompetent federal response was to blame. Critics quickly noticed and asked whether Cuomo’s decision to allow COVID-positive patients into nursing homes could have also been a factor.
“This state, I’m very proud of what New Yorkers have done, because they have rallied. We were ambushed like no other state, Nicolle, and again, it was from federal incompetence,” Cuomo said.
“Incompetent government kills people. More people died than needed to die in COVID. That’s the truth.”
I don’t think there will be too many people joining Cuomo’s pity party. How New York was “ambushed” is a mystery. But it shows how desperate he’s become to deflect blame for a crisis that has so far cost his state more than 34,500 deaths.
Cuomo is sticking to his official story — that the Trump administration made him order those sick people back into nursing homes. That’s not even remotely true, but the national media — who have a lot invested in making Cuomo the hero of the pandemic — don’t even bother to ask him about the nursing home deaths.
While Cuomo was attempting to pin the blame on the Trump administration, his comment was quickly mocked on social media as many people pointed out that many of New York’s coronavirus-related deaths occurred after the state’s controversial March 2020 decision to issue a directive that required nursing homes to accept COVID-positive patients released from hospitals.
The directive was reversed in May, when Cuomo said hospitals cannot send patients back to nursing homes unless they have tested negative. In the months that followed, Cuomo regularly took heat over the decision, though largely received a pass from the likes of CNN and MSNBC.
Twitterers had a field day mocking the governor.
Is this his confession? https://t.co/WFg629iEv5
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) January 26, 2021
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) January 26, 2021
“Incompetent government kills people”
— Hypatia (@HypatiaAscent) January 26, 2021
I commend that you are calling yourself out. Now resign.
— Lauren Joffe (@thespinzone) January 26, 2021
Is he aware that he is Andrew Cuomo? https://t.co/BDK2vSfkfy
— JAC (@michcusejac5) January 27, 2021
Mirror, mirror, on the wall… https://t.co/QTKF3Nvj8Y
— John Brite 🇺🇸 (@realJohnBrite) January 26, 2021
Is Cuomo so obtuse that he can’t see that his own decisions were a large part of that “government incompetence” he’s referring to? Whether he is or not, whenever he appears on CNN or MSNBC, he is among friends and can say virtually anything without being challenged.