Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo pushed back on CNN anchor and “little brother” Chris Cuomo during a Wednesday evening interview.
The younger Cuomo, broadcasting his show from his basement, spoke with the governor about his meeting with President Donald Trump about the necessary steps to reopen New York’s economy after the state was devastated by the coronavirus pandemic. (RELATED: ‘Bulls**t!’: CNN’s Chris Cuomo Slams Trump Over ‘Asinine’ Leadership Based On Clip That Omits Half His Comments)
“Let’s bring in the Governor of New York to talk about this,” Chris began. “He just met with the president. It’s good to have you, Mr. Governor. Thank you for joining us.”
“Good to be with you, little brother,” the governor replied.
The younger Cuomo then recapped the meeting between the governor and the president, both of whom had said that the meeting went well. “You keep saying you have good meetings, so does he, and then you don’t have what you need to reopen. How is this progress?” he asked.
“Nice to be with you again,” Andrew said, appearing to ignore the question. “Glad you’re feeling better. Glad Christine is feeling better.”
“It is a common frustration, governor. It’s a common frustration,” Chris pressed again.
“I don’t know how common it is and I don’t know that — your assertion is factually accurate,” Andrew pushed back. “I don’t keep meeting with the federal government, and I don’t keep meeting with the president. We had one meeting, and it was a good meeting and it was a productive meeting.”
Governor Cuomo went on to point out that the meeting was a success not because he was ready to reopen New York right away, but because he and Trump had been able to better define the next steps on that path.
“The testing, we have been going back and forth on who is supposed to do what on testing and the federal government starts by saying we don’t do testing. It’s up to the states,” Cuomo explained. “The states say we need federal help and we were getting nowhere so I wanted to go and I wanted to sit down at the table and actually have the conversation and talk about testing and here are the different functions and who is going to do what. The president said they should take the lead on testing, he’s right. I have 300 labs in my state, okay?”
The governor went on to explain that he needed help from the federal government with regard to locating and procuring the supplies needed to ramp up testing, and that President Trump had been willing to work with him on that.
“Testing is only one piece, Chris,” he concluded. “You don’t re-open just because you have testing. You reopen, first of all, when the numbers stabilize. New York was still coming down the curve, but we’re not down and you’re not going to reopen until that number is at a lower, lower point and then you test to make sure you’re still at that point and calibrate where you are.”