CNN anchor Jake Tapper on Tuesday said he found it “perplexing” to see New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) “crowing” about the state’s success in managing the coronavirus given how many people have died in the state due to COVID-19.
“While it’s great that the numbers have gone down, it’s perplexing to see crowing.” Tapper wrote in a tweet Tuesday adding that, no other state had lost as many lives — “not even close.”
The “State of the Union” host’s remarks come after Cuomo appeared on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Monday night.
In his interview with Fallon, Cuomo said he was grateful.
“We tamed the beast here in New York,” Cuomo said adding that he was “so proud to be a New Yorker.”
Cuomo said the state’s COVID-19 test positivity rate which went from being “one of the worst infection rates in the country” now is “the best,” as it hovers between between 1 and 2 percent.
Tapper noted in his string of tweets that the state has “lost more than 32,000 lives to COVID-19” and that New York leaders “do not have a success story to tell.”
Although New York still ranks highest for the number of fatalities caused by the coronavirus, the second-term governor has arguably not faced the severity of criticism leveled at some other governors, Tapper said.
When asked what drove the state’s success at quelling the coronavirus for now, Cuomo deflected praise.
“You’re right, we did something that’s going to go down in the history books,” Cuomo told Fallon, saying that he “had nothing to do with it” aside from explaining the situation to New York residents who took the appropriate action by following CDC guidelines like wearings masks and practicing social distancing.
In the spring, New York City was the epicenter for the pandemic in the U.S., but was unseated by Sun Belt states like Florida and Texas for new cases as those states have recorded new daily highs for positive cases of the virus in recent weeks.
Cuomo was at one time widely criticized for his handling of the coronavirus in nursing homes, which were particularly hard hit with cases that caused a great number of deaths — nearly 6,500.
In late June, Cuomo told Chuck Todd on “Meet the Press,” that he had “taken political heat” for how he dealt with the crisis in nursing homes.
Yet, results from a Siena College poll published at the end of April, after New York experienced a massive upshot in cases, shows that the governor’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic boosted his approval rating, even among Republicans.
Cuomo’s favorability rating at that time was 77 percent to 21 percent, his highest since February 2011, according to the poll.