‘Let’s keep it all in focus, because the anxiety and the fear are not connected to the facts and the reality of this situation….’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) Just one week after crediting the Trump administration for its timely response to the coronavirus, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo argued the “federal government has fallen down on the job.”
“Let me be candid but let me be careful because I don’t want the president tweeting at me of that broadcast. I have to work with the federal government to make it work here.” Cuomo said during an interview with MSNBC Wednesday morning. “But, we knew this was coming in November and December.”
As he has in the past, blaming Trump for New York’s budget deficit and other hardships that have led residents to flee for other states, Cuomo shrugged off his own failures to pin the responsibility solely on the federal government.
“[This] reminds me of Hurricane Katrina, just a failed federal response and failed federal mobilization,” he said, referencing the 2005 natural disaster that flooded New Orleans after then-Gov. Ray Nagin, a Democrat, failed to adequately prepare residents to evacuate.
“They underestimated the challenge,” Cuomo continued. “Now, who and how and why, I don’t know.”
To prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Cuomo established a one mile containment area in New Rochelle this week, closing down the public schools and asking the National Guard for additional help.
When asked why he was taking such dramatic steps, Cuomo said that it’s because of the “trajectory of exposure” and how that will affect the “math.”
Just last week, however, he was urging media outlets and politicians not to spread panic about the coronavirus, assuring Americans that they are more likely to catch the flu, which has a greater likelihood of causing death.
The public shouldn’t panic just yet, Cuomo had argued, since the majority of the population was unlikely to succumb to the virus, even if the infection did spread. As with all viruses, the body itself plays the biggest role in building immunity.
“The bottom line realization that 80 percent of the people will self-cure, self-resolve the virus and the target problem,” Cuomo said. “The 1.2% mortality is senior citizens and people who have compromised immune systems.”
Now, however, Cuomo is blaming the spread of the virus on the Trump administration, which he said has failed to provide adequate testing.
“The federal government has just had a really poor response. And what I’m saying to them is, at least get out of the way,” Cuomo told MSNBC. “I’m saying to them now, we know the horse is out of the barn, we know this is much more widespread, at least let the states scramble and do what they can.”
Cuomo then backtracked in a later interview with CNN, arguing that the coronavirus “is not going to end the world.”
“This is not the Ebola virus which I went through. That was frightening … But that’s really what this is about, right?” he told CNN. “And let’s keep it all in focus, because the anxiety and the fear are not connected to the facts and the reality of this situation.”
Even though New York has established a containment zone, Cuomo said he doesn’t want to “limit people’s mobility,” before adding that his biggest concern is how the coronavirus could affect hospitals, nursing homes and other facilities that house “vulnerable people.”
“All the numbers say it’s going to be a wave,” he told MSNBC. “We’re worried about the health care system. We’re studying very closely our vacancy in the health care system and we’re planning backup hospitals, quarantine centers if you will, just in case we overwhelm the health care system.”
Meanwhile, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, who regularly spars with President Trump, said the Trump administration’s actions have helped alleviate the state’s burdens.
“We had a private conversation, but [Trump] said, ‘We’re gonna do the right thing’ and ‘You have my support, all of our support, logistically and otherwise,'” Newsom told reporters at a Monday news conference. “[Trump] said everything I could have hoped for. And we had a very long conversation and every single thing he said, they followed through on.”