New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo lashed out at conservative news outlets Friday when asked if he would appoint an independent commission to investigate whether his polices were responsible for a surge of nursing home deaths in the state.
“I believe it is a political issue,” Cuomo said at a press conference when a New York Post reporter asked about a possible independent review of his nursing home polices, The Post reported.
“I think it’s the New York Post, I think it’s Michael Goodwin, I think it’s Bob McManus, I think it’s Fox TV,” the Democrat said, naming two Post columnists.
Cuomo has come under fire over a March 25 order that required hospitals to send nursing home patients back to their facilities even if they tested positive for coronavirus. Cuomo’s critics said that the policy would increase the risk of outbreaks at long-term care facilities, putting residents’ lives in danger.
More than 6,400 nursing home patients have died in New York since the coronavirus pandemic started.
Cuomo has claimed that his policy did not cause the surge in nursing home deaths by citing a New York State Department of Health study released on July 6 that said that nursing home staffers were likely taking the virus into facilities.
But he Daily Caller News Foundation has reported that the consulting group that Cuomo cited as justification to enact the nursing home policy was also involved in analyzing the data for the health department report that he claimed vindicates him.
A bipartisan chorus of national and state lawmakers have cast doubt on the study. The New York state legislature is scheduled to hold hearings on the nursing home deaths on Aug. 3 and Aug. 10.
Cuomo didn’t mention that CNN’s Jake Tapper has also criticized his handling of the pandemic and the state’s nursing home policies.