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Tags: nicole malliotakis | andrew cuomo | new york | covid-19 | pandemic | nursing homes

Rep. Malliotakis to Newsmax: Cuomo Took 'Zero' Blame on COVID Policy

By    |   Wednesday, 12 June 2024 11:01 AM EDT

Former New York Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo "blamed everybody and took zero accountability" for decisions he made during the COVID-19 pandemic, Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, R-N.Y., told Newsmax on Wednesday.

While testifying to a House committee about a policy during the COVID-19 pandemic that required nursing homes to admit patients who tested positive for the disease and has been blamed for the deaths of at least 15,000 people, Cuomo ducked blame, she said.

"The governor spent most of the six hours pointing fingers and deflecting," Malliotakis, who participated in Tuesday's closed-door hearing of House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, said on "Wake Up America."

But the directive, from March 25, 2020, had "both his name and the health commissioners on top of the stationary," said Malliotakis.

"First he blamed some staffer, an unknown staffer in the Department of Health saying that neither he nor the health commissioner signed off on it or were aware of the directive," she said.

Malliotakis added that she finds it "unbelievable" that Cuomo wouldn't have conducted an internal investigation to identify the staff member who issued the deadly mandate.

"Then he tried to blame the federal government, CMS and CDC guidelines, saying that he mirrored the directive on that," she said. "Except the problem is, the federal government's guidelines were a recommendation. It was saying, 'you can do this.' It did not mandate the nursing homes to take positive patients if they could not care for them, did not have the proper PPE, the staffing levels or the ability to separate them if they were positive."

Cuomo also blamed the nursing homes themselves, "saying that they could have rejected these patients if they could not care for them," said Malliotakis, noting that the directive did not say anything about that option.

"That was not the understanding of any of the nursing homes that I represent or those across the state of New York," she said.

The hearing left many questions unanswered, but also brought up many new questions, because Cuomo "spent most of the time pointing fingers and blaming everybody around him, whether it be the president of the United States or the state legislature or the nursing homes or the various federal agencies, or maybe this low-level staff member at the Department of Health, who we are yet to identify," according to the congresswoman.

Much of what Cuomo said was also not in sync with what others from his administration have already said, Malliotakis added.

"We need to drill down to find out who is being dishonest," she continued, "but I think a lot of it was trying to deflect accountability."

Cuomo also refused to apologize for the directive, or even if he's sorry it moved forward or if he would change it, knowing what he now knows, Malliotakis said.

"His answer was no," she told Newsmax. "His answer was he would have explained it and communicated it better… it's hard to believe, again, that a governor did not know what was happening in his own state, particularly with such an important directive and mandate that occurred here, when he was speaking the whole time about how seniors are the most vulnerable population to COVID-19. "

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Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Former New York Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo "blamed everybody and took zero accountability" for decisions he made during the COVID-19 pandemic, Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, R-N.Y., told Newsmax on Wednesday.
nicole malliotakis, andrew cuomo, new york, covid-19, pandemic, nursing homes
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2024-01-12
Wednesday, 12 June 2024 11:01 AM
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