On Monday, several prominent Democratic Senators criticized New York Governor Andrew Cuomo for not being sincere at the press conference he held to answer the questions regarding his team’s management of requests on data about the nursing home deaths from COVID-19.
Cuomo used the press conference to explain that both the state legislature and the Department of Justice asked for data simultaneously.
The New York Governor further stated that his administration opted to consider the latter’s request before, adding that the state officials were informed that they would have to wait for their request to be processed.
Cuomo also said that both the assembly and the Senate were informed about the prioritization, suggesting that the ongoing pandemic hindered his administration’s ability to handle both requests promptly.
Cuomo’s explanation received harsh reactions from several New York Senators from the Democratic Party.
Jessica Ramos probably went the furthest by describing Cuomo’s statement as ‘trash’.
Ramos tweeted that no one can believe the governor and that the Senate members were not in any way informed about the decision to prioritize the request of the Department of Justice.
Ramos also criticized Cuomo for writing a book while the people were dying in New York.
Ironically, the book Cuomo wrote during the pandemic and eventually published provides advice for a ‘successful leadership’ during the COVID-19 crisis.
Earlier, Ramos invited the relevant institutions to deprive Cuomo of the emergency powers he was given to more efficiently deal with the pandemic.
It all started with the nursing homes
Last week, Cuomo’s administration came under fire when the reporters from the Associated Press revealed that a significant number of COVID-19 deaths in the nursing homes were left out from the official data.
Moreover, the New York Post shared a transcript in which an important figure in Cuomo’s cabinet admitted that nursing home data was deliberately concealed so that the responsible officials can avoid federal investigation in the future.
Alessandra Biaggi and Gustavo Rivera are the Democratic Senators from New York who joined Ramos in her condemnation of Cuomo.
They both said that they did not receive any information from the governor’s office but rather read about the Department of Justice’s data request prioritization in the media.
Biaggi even characterized Cuomo’s conference as deceptive, theatrical, and full of deflection.
New York Senator Julia Salazar, also from the Democratic Party, seconded her colleagues and added that the goal of Cuomo’s conference was to eschew the responsibility for the misrepresentation of nursing home data revealed by journalists.
Nonetheless, Cuomo kept denying that his administration manipulated COVID-19 data in any way.
At the same time, he remained firm in his statement that New York lawmakers were informed about the decisions and expressed his remorse for not prioritizing the data request from the state lawmakers.