Cuomo pushes back on Trump over ventilators: ‘I operate on facts’
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday pushed back on President Trump’s assertion that his state does not really need thousands more ventilators to fight the coronavirus outbreak there, saying “I operate on facts.”
“Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, but I don’t operate here on opinion, I operate on facts and on data and on numbers and on projections,” Cuomo said when asked about Trump’s comments the previous night.
Trump, speaking to Fox News host Sean Hannity, questioned whether the state, which is at the center of the coronavirus outbreak, really needed 30,000 more ventilators, which Cuomo has been pleading for from the Trump administration.
“I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators,” Trump said. “You know, you go into major hospitals, sometimes they’ll have two ventilators. And now all of a sudden they’re saying, ‘Can we order 30,000 ventilators?’ “
Cuomo, speaking to reporters, did not mention Trump’s name in responding, but put the focus on the data he is acting on, while implying Trump is relying on “opinion” only.
Cuomo said projections from Cornell Weill, the CDC and McKinsey showed a stark picture that could require many thousands more ventilators.
Cuomo said earlier this week the state needs 30,000 ventilators and only has 11,000. He has urged Trump to use the Defense Production Act to direct companies to make more ventilators.
Trump has invoked the act but has yet to do it, and has said publicly that he sees it more as a tool of leverage.
The president on Friday, however, did tweet critically of General Motors and Ford that he wanted them to speed up their ventilator production. In the tweet, he threatened to use the Defense Production Act to compel them to do so.
The Hill has removed its comment section, as there are many other forums for readers to participate in the conversation. We invite you to join the discussion on Facebook and Twitter.