New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo “nakedly” admitted to “failure” by saying President Trump will need an “army if he thinks he’s going to walk down the streets in New York,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said on Thursday.
McEnany made the comment on “America’s Newsroom” one day after Cuomo responded to President Trump’s threat to pull federal funding from New York City — as well as Washington, D.C.; Seattle, and Portland, Ore. — as part of an effort to target “anarchist jurisdictions.”
“He can’t have enough bodyguards to walk through New York City,” Cuomo said. “Forget bodyguards, he'd better have an army if he thinks he’s going to walk down the streets in New York.
“He is persona non grata in New York City, and I think he knows that, and he'll never come back to New York, because New Yorkers will never forget how gratuitously mean he has been,” Cuomo added.
In response, McEnany said on Thursday, “It’s not often you hear a governor describe in vivid detail how he’s lost control of his state, but there you have Gov. Cuomo saying, ‘You can’t come to New York without an army.’
“Well I guess that is the case when you have more than 1,000 shootings before Labor Day, when there’s a 277% increase in shootings in a one month period over the year prior,” she continued.
“It’s very rare you hear a Democrat governor nakedly admit to failure and that's what Governor Cuomo has just done for us.”
McEnany was referencing the increase in violent crime in New York City. Newly released statistics by the New York Police Department shows gun violence in New York City continues its upward trend with a 166% surge in the month of August compared to the same month last year.
There were 242 shootings last month compared to the 91 recorded in August 2019, according to NYPD data. New York City saw 1,014 shootings to date as of Aug. 31 – an 87% spike from the 541 reported during the same period last year, police said.
Both Cuomo, 62, and Trump, 74, are natives of the Queens borough of New York City.
Cuomo reportedly later clarified he was not threatening the president but rather expressing how disliked he believes Trump is by New Yorkers, according to Politico.
Trump has repeatedly gone after “Democrat cities,” blaming their leadership for the rise of the Black Lives Matter protests and ensuing riots and looting that have erupted across the nation since George Floyd, who was Black, died May 25 while in police custody in Minneapolis.
Fox News’ Caitlin McFall and Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report.