Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo wondered whether the World Health Organization (WHO) should have been blowing the “whistle” in “December and January” regarding the dangers posed by the then-new coronavirus pandemic.
President Donald Trump has blamed the WHO and threatened to cut American funding to the organization for China-centric disinformation amidst the pandemic and a failure to warn the world early, tweeting earlier this week that he was glad he “rejected their advice on keeping our borders open to China early on.”
The W.H.O. really blew it. For some reason, funded largely by the United States, yet very China centric. We will be giving that a good look. Fortunately I rejected their advice on keeping our borders open to China early on. Why did they give us such a faulty recommendation?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 7, 2020
Agreeing with Trump about the lack of early warnings during his Friday press conference, Cuomo told reporters about a question he has “had from day one.”
“Where were the horns that should have been triggered back in December and January?” the New York governor asked. “Where were the warning signs? Who was supposed to blow the whistle? The president has asked this question, and I think he’s right.”
“The president’s answer is the World Health Organization should’ve been blowing the whistle,” he continued. “I don’t know enough to know if that’s right or wrong, but I know the question is right, and sometimes the question is more important than the answer. How did this happen?”
The New York governor noted the “questions” and “warnings” that could be seen from the coronavirus media “headlines in January.”
“I still want to know how this happened, because the warning signs were there,” he said.
Gov. Cuomo says President Trump was right to question the WHO on pandemic warning signs.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) April 10, 2020
“Where were the international experts saying, ‘Well if this is happening there, this is what we should expect to happen in the United States or prepare to happen in the United States’?” Cuomo asked. “January, February, you still had sources in this country basically saying ‘there’s nothing to worry about.’ How did that happen, and did we really need to be in this situation where the United States winds up with a higher number of cases than the places that went before?” (RELATED: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo Thanks Trump For ‘Cooperation,’ Says President Is Using Defense Production Act ‘Well’)
The New York governor declined to “get into the blame games” when asked about the ongoing response from the federal government.