The vinegar Gov. Andrew Cuomo unleashed on President Trump and his administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic Tuesday gave way to honey on Wednesday, as he thanked the White House for its “cooperation.”
“What we’re working on is a common challenge,” said Cuomo in an Albany press briefing, noting that he’s been on the phone with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, as well as the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, the “extraordinarily helpful” Jared Kushner.
The united front was a sharp change from Tuesday, when a fiery Cuomo accused Trump and the federal government of dooming tens of thousands of New Yorkers to die by not doing more to help the state amass 30,000 needed ventilators.
“It’s something that our team is working on with the White House team, and I want to thank the president for his cooperation and his team for their cooperation,” Cuomo said Wednesday.
Cuomo also appeared to come around on Trump’s restrained use of the Defense Production Act.
The president could exercise the law to compel private businesses to manufacture needed supplies, but — to Cuomo’s chagrin — has resisted doing so in favor of relying on companies to step up voluntarily.
But despite previously critiquing Trump’s reticence to use the DPA, Cuomo on Wednesday saw the light.
“The president and his team, I think, are using the DPA well because it’s a leverage tool when you’re dealing with private companies,” he said.
Cuomo wasn’t entirely without critiques for Washington, however, panning a $2 trillion federal stimulus package as not going far enough for New York.
“It would really be terrible for the state of New York,” he said. “What does it mean for New York state government? It means $3.8 billion. … But we’re looking at a revenue shortfall of $9, $10, $15 billion.
“New York City only gets $1.3 billion from this package,” added Cuomo. “That is a drop in the bucket.”