New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo during a National Governors Association meeting with President Biden Thursday took shots at former President Donald Trump’s handling of the COVID-19 vaccine effort, as pressure on the governor mounts over sexual harassment claims and how he handled nursing home patient care in his state.
Cuomo said many governors felt they did not receive the support they needed while on the front lines of the pandemic over the past year, calling the new relationship with the Biden administration a “functional partnership.”
“Mr. President, we thank you not just for your effort, but even more for the results you have achieved,” Cuomo said during the virtual event. “We understand the difficult situation you inherited upon taking office. You had a country anxious for vaccinations and that when you went to the cupboard, it was all but bare. You have made amazing progress in securing enough vaccines.”
Biden said his administration has doubled the daily vaccination rate since he took office as he commemorated the completion of 50 million shots in 37 days on Thursday.
The normally outspoken Cuomo appeared to largely stay on-script during Thursday’s meeting as pressure on his administration mounts over the nursing home controversy and new sexual harassment claims.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Thursday that “any allegation should be reviewed” after a former aide accused Cuomo of unwanted touching and other inappropriate behavior.
Cuomo’s office has pushed back on the claims, which were detailed in a Medium blog post.
Republicans in the New York State Legislature are pushing to strip Cuomo of his emergency authority, while there are calls for him to resign amid revelations that his administration may have intentionally underreported the coronavirus-related death toll in New York-area nursing homes.
There are ongoing investigations as it was recently revealed more than 14,000 long-term care residents in New York died of the virus, which is significantly higher than previously reported figures suggested.