State Watch

Cuomo: Trump administration ‘in denial’ about coronavirus ‘problem’

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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Sunday the Trump administration is “in denial” about the coronavirus pandemic and has failed in mitigating the spread of the virus. 

“If you listen to what the [Health and Human Services] secretary said, if you listen to what the president says, what they said at the White House briefing, they’re saying what they said three months ago. They’re basically in denial about the problem. They don’t want to tell the American people the truth,” Cuomo said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” 

Cuomo noted that the surge, mainly in the South and West, is not part of a second wave, but is rather a continuation of the first wave of the pandemic. 

“It was a failed effort to stop the first wave in the country,” Cuomo said. “And as you pointed out, New York is in a totally different place.”

New York, once the epicenter of the pandemic, has seen a decrease in coronavirus cases as other states have seen surges since rolling back restrictions put in place to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. 

On Friday the White House coronavirus task force held its first briefing since May, during which Vice President Pence sought to reassure the public that the coronavirus pandemic is under control as daily infections topped 40,000 for the first time in more than a month. 

New York has started lifting restrictions in all parts of the state to varying degrees, including allowing businesses in New York City, once the city with the highest rate of coronavirus cases, to reopen at limited capacity. 

NBC’s Chuck Todd asked Cuomo how difficult it will be to stop a resurgence in New York “if the rest of the country is struggling the way that it’s struggling.”

Cuomo said the state is still on track with the metrics it put in place to reopen, including the availability of hospital beds, amount of testing, and personal protective equipment available. 

This is a virus, it doesn’t respond to politics. You can’t tweet at it, you have to treat it. And we never did that,” he said. 

“We have less than 800 people in hospitals, lowest number basically since we started. How does that number go up? Two ways: lack of compliance, and I’m diligent about staying after New Yorkers and local governments that have to police it. And second, I’m now afraid of the spread coming from other states because we are one country, and people travel and I’m afraid the infection rate in the other states, will come back to New York and raise that rate again,” he added. 

Cuomo along with the governors of New Jersey and Connecticut last Wednesday announced a travel advisory that requires travelers from states with high rates of coronavirus infections to quarantine for 14 days.

Tags Andrew Cuomo Chuck Todd Coronavirus COVID-19 Mike Pence New York Sunday talk shows

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