Last Week Tonight host and left-wing comedian John Oliver blasted New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) on Sunday over his nursing home scandal, in which the governor’s administration underreported nursing home deaths after he signed a directive forcing nursing homes to accept coronavirus-positive patients in order to free up hospital beds.
“Underreporting nursing home deaths,” Oliver said. “You’d expect that less from a transparent democracy, and more from an authoritarian regime, like North Korea, which to this day, has yet to report a single case of coronavirus.”
Andrew Cuomo has fallen under fire for how his administration handled the state’s nursing homes. A directive Cuomo made last March forced nursing homes to accept coronavirus-positive patients in order to free up hospital beds.
“Now that would be bad enough, but since then, his administration has tried to downplay any consequences of that action, releasing a report last July that laid the blame on nursing home staffers for infecting residents, and, as a Cuomo aide recently told lawmakers, actively concealing data on COVID deaths out of fear it’d be used against them by federal prosecutors,” John Oliver added.
A report from New York’s attorney general says that nursing home deaths could have been under-reported by as much as 50 percent, amounting to thousands of deaths.
“And Cuomo is famously unpleasant,” said Oliver. “He reportedly has a, ‘Do Not Yell At List,’ which a former aide apparently admitted is very small, and just this week, a different former aide accused him of sexual harassment. Even before the current scandals, there was something gross about Cuomo’s glee in his public adulation last year.”
Oliver went on to cite more examples, such as the governor’s appearances with his brother Chris Cuomo on CNN, his co-signing of the term “cuomosexuals,” and a book he published last October about the lessons he learned from the pandemic.
“And those press conferences where Cuomo loved to insist on the importance of facts now play a little differently after everything we’ve learned,” John Oliver added. “The thing is, it’s hard to follow the facts if the people in charge of those facts are actively withholding them from you.”