Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., on Thursday said New York leadership has been inconsistent amid the coronavirus pandemic and called Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plea to the wealthy to come back to New York a double standard.
“You had these elected officials in Albany, the governor himself, too saying that (President Donald Trump’s suggestion of sealing off New York, New Jersey and parts of Connecticut to slow the spread of COVID-19) was basically an act of war against New York,” Zeldin said during an appearance on Newsmax TV’s “Spicer & Co.”
“And that’s when the outbreak was in the New York/New Jersey area and there was a desire on the part of some people in Washington or other state governors around the country who say that if the outbreak was in New Jersey or New York let’s contain it there. … Now you’re seeing the governor and the New York City Mayor going all the way to the other end of the spectrum. It’s a double standard a lot of people are pointing out.”
Cuomo on Wednesday urged wealthy New Yorkers to return to Manhattan as COVID-19 is “under control.”
Many residents fled the city at the height of the pandemic, leaving thousands of apartments across the city empty.
“I literally talk to people all day long who are now in their Hamptons house who also lived here, or in their Hudson Valley house or in their Connecticut weekend house, and I say, ‘You gotta come back, when are you coming back?’” Cuomo said during a press conference earlier this week.
"'We'll go to dinner, I'll buy you a drink, come over I’ll cook’,” Cuomo said. The governor has also been fighting recent calls to raise taxes on the wealthy.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, for his part, has pushed for more taxes on the wealthy if the federal government does not do more to assist the city.
The mayor also said he was “troubled” by Cuomo’s appeal.
"To the point of the folks out in the Hamptons ... we don’t make decisions based on a wealthy few,” de Blasio said. “I was troubled to hear this concept.”
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