New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has stood up for President Donald Trump and his clashes with the press, claiming that reporters have a ‘nastier tone’ than they used to and that they should respect the office of the President.
Despite his previous clashes with Trump, Cuomo took a hit at reporters, saying that some of them are ‘unprofessional’, ask ‘unintelligent’ questions and act like a ‘jerk’ as he spoke to WAMC’s Alan Chartock on Monday about own coronavirus press briefings.
Earlier on Monday, Cuomo had picked up an Emmy for ‘masterful’ use of TV with the briefings, but claimed they were not all ‘love and kisses’ and would get ‘testy’ as he accused reporters of asking questions simply for a headline.
Cuomo faced immediate backlash from the press following Monday’s interview, however, after he also let slip that he had invited his 89-year-old mother to Thanksgiving, despite urging other New Yorkers not to gather with those outside of their household.
It followed criticism over Cuomo’s clash with a reporter last week whom he called ‘obnoxious’ and ‘offensive’, as well as run ins with the press over the book he has published about his management of the pandemic.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo defended President Donald Trump on Monday claiming that reporters are ‘nastier’ than they used to be and should respect the president
Trump has often claimed that the press treat him unfairly
Cuomo was branded a ‘hypocrite’ by the press this week for urging New Yorkers not to gather with those outside of their household on Thanksgiving despite his own plan to dine with family
‘There is a nastier tone now with the press,’ Cuomo claimed in Monday’s interview.
‘It’s not just New York, it’s across the nation. There’s a nastiness, there’s a disrespect that never existed.
‘I’ve watched hundreds of press conferences over the years. If anyone used the tone that they use with me in some of these press conferences — if you did that with my old man, you’d be lucky if he didn’t walk around and deck you,’ he added referencing his father Mario Cuomo, who was also a three-time New York governor.
‘The way they questioned President Trump at some of these press conferences I’ve never heard, I’ve never heard that tone with the president,’ he added, rushing to support the president despite their ongoing feud.
The president often claims that the press treats him unfairly.
When pushed about whether Trump deserves the respect, Cuomo responded: ‘Well, yeah, except there’s supposed to be a decorum to the institution. You want to say, “Well I don’t like the president and I disrespect him”. I know. But it’s still the office of the president.’
The governor then said that he tried to respect journalists but that many of them are now ‘bias’ and ‘don’t know the facts’.
‘I think there are reporters who are just unprofessional, don’t know the facts and asked really bias questions,’ he claimed.
‘They’re going to come with a questioning fitting what their editor wants that night. You have reporters who ask questions that are just really unintelligent but I try to get past that because they’re a member of the press and the relationship is with the press.
‘I’m doing this to inform people through the press so just because a person is a jerk, doesn’t mean that person doesn’t count.’
He joked again about his father when he said: ‘They don’t even know testy, by the way. They think this is testy, they should have seen the old days with those press conferences with my father, they don’t know testy. He had no time for it, but I think that’s part of it.
‘I’m respectful of the questions and the institution etc. but sometimes I’m trying to make sure that people have facts and I get the press are trying to find a headline but I’m trying to communicate facts and I don’t want to get people confused,’ he added.
Cuomo had urged other New Yorkers not to gathers with people outside their household
Cuomo was blasted as a ‘hypocrite’ for planning to spend Thanksgiving with his mother
Cuomo had also planned to spend Thanksgiving with two of his three daughters
Despite appearing to back Trump in the first part of the interview, Cuomo then went on to slam the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic as he spoke about the governors’ meeting with president elect Joe Biden last week.
‘Never have you had a national pandemic handed to 50 governors,’ Cuomo stated of Trump’s decision.
‘It was a bizarre federal concept, because it was really a federal obligation.
‘When it’s 50 states involved, it makes it national and the federal government should be involved but this president said, “oh no, it’s up to you, don’t worry, I have your back”.
‘And now on the vaccinations it’s the same thing … so it’s incredible difficult for the governors and they are looking for help from the federal government,’ Cuomo added.
He then praised Biden claiming that he was ‘so different than what had gone on in the past with the prior administration’.
‘He was open, he was bipartisan, he was friendly, he wasn’t talking at us, he was asking us questions, Cuomo claimed.
‘It was a totally different reaction even with the Republican governors, while some are still not willing to concede [the election], but even those Republicans took very well to Joe Biden.’
The governor faced immediate backlash after the interview, however, after letting slip that he planned to celebrate Thanksgiving with his 89-year-old mother Matilda and two of his three daughters, while telling other New Yorkers to limit their own celebrations.
He said he wanted to drive to Chicago to pick up his third daughter, Michaela, and bring her home to join them but she said it was not safe. New York’s rule is that no more than 10 people can gather but the CDC says people should not mix households.
Cuomo was blasted by critics who called him a ‘hypocrite’ for inviting his elderly mother when they are being warned by the CDC not to see theirs, and when he himself has told them not to travel or see extended family.
Cuomo has been condemned for his recent run-ins with reporters
On Tuesday morning, he said he’d phoned his mother to tell her she could no longer come on Monday night. She then phoned him back this morning because, he said, she ‘doesn’t understand’.
He later told journalists he made the decision because has no time to quarantine for three days before seeing his mother but expressed no remorse that it had originally been his plan to gather with her.
‘I could have stayed home after yesterday until Thanksgiving, quarantined for three days and then taken a test and had no exposure, that would have been safer but that would have been reasonable and safe for my mother.
‘But I have to work today and tomorrow so I wouldn’t, it’s too risky to see my mother.
‘I never said to anyone “you should be alone”. The CDC’s guidance is only your household. Ours is no more than 10. You can be with your mother. Safe is you should be, quarantined, removed from other people, and take a test.
‘I’m not in a position to do that,’ he said.
He went on: ‘People should celebrate Thanksgiving just do it smartly and intelligently. You can be with four people.’
Cuomo on Monday accepted his International Founders Emmy for ‘masterful’ use of TV with his COVID-19 press conferences after being lauded by stars including Robert DeNiro, Billy Joel, Ben Stiller and Spike Lee.
However, he was slammed for accepting the award when his state had by far the worst COVID problem of anywhere in the country and when he made decisions like sending elderly patients back into nursing homes which triggered thousands more deaths.
Despite that, Cuomo has written a book about the pandemic titled ‘Lessons in Leadership’ which also faced criticism from the families of those who died in nursing homes.
Cuomo’s decision to write the book about how he managed the pandemic was questioned as the city still faces an outbreak and rising cases.
Last week, the governor faced yet another run-in with the press after he lashed out and scolded one journalist for what he called an ‘obnoxious’ and ‘offensive’ tone, before telling another he ‘didn’t care’ what they thought.
Cuomo has written a book about the pandemic titled ‘Lessons in Leadership’ which faced criticism from the families of those who died in New York nursing homes
Cuomo’s ire was seemingly struck when veteran Wall Street Journal reporter Jimmy Vielkind asked whether NYC public schools would be staying open or closing on Thursday, amid rising COVID infections across the state.
‘Alright, first of all, let’s try not to be obnoxious and offensive in your tone. Because you’re 100-percent wrong,’ Cuomo thundered in response to the inquiry.
The Governor then explained that schools in the Big Apple will move into a designated medium risk ‘orange’ zone and will then shutter if the city hits a 3 percent infection rate.
Vielkind responded: ‘Does the city have the ability to close its schools, are you now taking control saying you have the power to make this decision? And for the millions of parents who want to know — are the schools going to open tomorrow in New York City?’
A visibly aggrieved Cuomo then replied, in a drawn-out tone, that if the reporter ‘had been paying attention’ he’d be aware that ‘orange zone law’ has been in place for over a month.
‘Follow the facts,’ Cuomo then barked.
Vielkind responded that he was ‘still confused’ over whether schools would be closed tomorrow, adding that ‘parents are still confused as well.’
‘Well, then you’re confused,’ Cuomo protested. ‘No, they’re not confused, you’re confused.’
The governors’ anger came as confusion reigned over whether NNYC public schools would be opened or closed the next day.
Mayor Bill de Blasio later confirmed they would shut and not reopen until at least the week after Thanksgiving as coronavirus cases in the city continue to rise.
Cuomo and de Blasio have often failed to see eye to eye on the reponse to the pandemic.
On Tuesday, Cuomo said he won’t shut down all of NYC if only some neighborhoods have COVID problems despite Mayor Bill de Blasio insisting he will.
The mayor also revealed that the test positivity rate ranges in the Big Apple from as high as 7.5 percent on Staten Island to just 0.2 percent in some parts of Manhattan.
The current New York City test positivity rate is 2.57 percent.