President Joe Biden praised New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s record on issues important to Democrats despite allegations of sexual harassment forcing the governor to resign on Tuesday.
After a speech celebrating his success with the infrastructure bill passing the Senate, Biden was asked by CBS News reporter Ed O’Keefe about Cuomo’s record as governor of New York.
“In terms of personal behavior or what he’s done as a governor?” Biden asked.
When O’Keefe clarified Biden should comment on Cuomo’s record as governor, he replied, “Well, he’s done a hell of a job.”
“Thought he’s done a hell of a job … both on everything from the access to voting to infrastructure, a whole range of things,” Biden continued. “That’s why it’s so sad.”
When challenged by CNN’s Kaitlan Collins on how he could separate Cuomo’s actions, Biden grew defensive, suggesting that he was only commenting on his record on infrastructure.
“Correct me if I’m wrong,” Biden said before he was corrected by O’Keefe, who repeated that his question was about Cuomo’s record as governor “generally.”
Biden expressed his frustration that Cuomo’s resignation was taking up the attention of the press.
“I’m not going to comment any more on Andrew Cuomo,” he said, waving away reporters.
Biden has a deep affection for Cuomo’s leadership, in particular during the coronavirus crisis — despite the scandal of ordering nursing homes to accept coronavirus patients and then covering up the death count.”
“Your governor in New York’s done one hell of a job,” Biden said in April 2020 during his presidential campaign. “I think he’s sort of the gold standard.”
When asked by reporters Tuesday if he agreed with Cuomo’s decision to resign, Biden replied, “I respect his decision.”