Gov. Andrew Cuomo suggested Wednesday that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fellow New York Democrat, was ignorant about the Holocaust when she compared concentration camps to migrant detention facilities.
“It’s a wholly inappropriate comparison — the Holocaust. You’re talking about a tragedy of biblical proportions and one of the greatest scourges in history,” Cuomo replied when he was asked about Ocasio-Cortez’s comparison during a press conference.
“Six million Jews died during the Holocaust. There is no comparison to the Holocaust. Period,” he continued. “To draw an equivalency suggests one does not understand what happened in the Holocaust.”
Ocasio-Cortez ignited a firestorm weeks earlier after she said during an Instagram livestream that the U.S. government is “running concentration camps on our southern border” to hold immigrants. (RELATED: Largest US Holocaust Museum Condemns Holocaust Analogies Following Ocasio-Cortez’s Concentration Camp Comparison)
“That is exactly what [holding facilities] are. They are concentration camps,” Ocasio-Cortez said at the time. “I want to talk to the people that are concerned enough with humanity to say that ‘Never Again’ means something. The fact that concentrations camps are now an institutionalized practice in the home of the free is extraordinarily disturbing and we need to do something about it.”
“Never Again” is the phrase Jews worldwide use to make sure that the extermination between 1939 and 1945 never happens again, and the phrase signaled she was referring specifically to Nazi concentration camps.
The comments received massive backlash over historical inaccuracy and insensitivity to the millions of Jews who were slaughtered in concentration camps during the Holocaust. Ocasio-Cortez initially doubled down on the claim and a host of liberals in the media tried defending the freshman congresswoman. However, after facing widespread criticism the freshman congresswoman denied she was ever referring Nazi concentration camps.
“Having said that, the situation at the border is horrendous in and of itself,” Cuomo added. “It is a human rights violation.”
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