New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during his daily press briefing on May 1, 2020 in Albany, New York.
Stefani Reynolds | Getty Images
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday rebuked President Donald Trump’s complaint that it’s unfair for Republicans to provide “bailouts” to Democrat-led states suffering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Cuomo, a Democrat whose state is the U.S. epicenter for the outbreak, sharply criticized the partisan rhetoric from Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who both say they are opposed sending federal emergency aid to states.
“It’s not red or blue, it’s red, white and blue. This coronavirus doesn’t pick Democrats or Republicans. It doesn’t kill Democrats or Republicans, it kills Americans,” Cuomo said at his daily press briefing. “If we don’t get the money from Washington, we can’t fund schools at the rate we want to fund them. We are in dire financial need.”
In an interview with the New York Post published Tuesday morning, Trump echoed McConnell’s stance opposing federal aid to so-called blue state governments, saying that Congress is not inclined to do bailouts.
Trump said that doing so would be unfair to Republican-led states because the states that need financial help are “run by Democrats in every case. Florida is doing phenomenal, Texas is doing phenomenal, the Midwest is, you know, fantastic — very little debt.” Texas and Florida both have Republican governors.
Cuomo said that he wouldn’t call financial assistance from the federal government a bail out, saying it was a “rhetorical, hyperbolic” word.
“There’s no bailout, because of the coronavirus this nation has been impacted and states have been impacted because the states make up the nation and we need financial help because of the coronavirus situation,” Cuomo said.
Cuomo said that New York and other Democratic-led states have paid more in federal taxes than they’ve received. He said New York pays $29 billion more in taxes to the federal government than it receives every year, and California pays nearly $6 billion more than it gets back. Meanwhile, Republican-led states Kentucky receives $37 billion more than it pays while Florida get $30 billion more in federal funding than it sends to the U.S.
This is a developing story. Please check back later for updates.