New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo fired back at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell during his press briefing on Thursday, angry that he suggested states such as New York declare bankruptcy in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.
Cuomo criticized McConnell as the “self-proclaimed grim reaper” for suggesting that Democrat states declare bankruptcy rather than get bailout funds from Congress.
The New York governor criticized McConnell’s “vicious” description of funds for the states as “blue state bailouts.”
“How ugly a thought,” Cuomo said. “Just think of what he’s saying.”
Cuomo was already facing a $6 billion deficit in New York and faces an even greater hole in his budget as a result of the coronavirus crisis.
McConnell said Wednesday that Republicans were not interested in bailing out states like New York that were already overwhelmed with debt.
“You raised yourself the important issue of what states have done, many of them have done to themselves with their pension programs,” McConnell explained in an interview with Hugh Hewitt. “There’s not going to be any desire on the Republican side to bail out state pensions by borrowing money from future generations.”
Cuomo has repeatedly called for members of Congress to demand state bailout funding, even putting heat on New York members of Congress.
But on Thursday, Cuomo focused on McConnell’s opposition to the idea.
“I mean, for crying out loud, if there was ever a time for you to put aside your pettiness and your partisanship. … That’s not who we are,” he said.
Cuomo said New York state puts much more money into the federal government than it took out, while Kentucky got more federal funding than it put in.
“Sen. McConnell, who’s getting bailed out here?” Cuomo said. “It’s your state that is living on the money that we generate. Your state is getting bailed out, not my state.”