MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle called out Governor Cuomo on nursing home policy that led to thousands of deaths


There is an old saying that if you don’t blow your own horn, there won’t be any music. Gov. Andrew Cuomo obviously is a believer, having ended his streak of 111 daily coronavirus briefings with another blast of praise for himself.


From March 2 until Friday, he held forth in marathon appearances that boosted his political ratings. Early on he hit an incredible 87 percent approval in the state and an April poll found that 56 percent of national Democrats wanted to dump Joe Biden and make Cuomo the presidential nominee.
That support reflected how skillfully the governor performed in front of the camera. He appeared to have command of the facts and used big graphics to demonstrate the flow of cases, hospitalizations and deaths. He repeated the federal mantra of “flatten the curve” to justify his historic shutdown of New York.
As time wore on, Cuomo got personal and used his mother, three daughters, CNN-anchor brother, late father and others as props. The off-topic detours, which included his method for cooking meatballs, grew weirdly indulgent, but still endeared him to viewers dubbed “Cuomosexuals.”
But there’s another old saying that also applies here — appearances can be deceiving. In this case, they certainly were because the off-camera reality is that ­Cuomo’s management of the pandemic response was disastrous beyond measure.
Thousands of New York’s elderly died likely because of his blunders — yet he heartlessly refuses to acknowledge a single mistake to grieving families.
Ruhle said House Republicans were looking into this policy and directly asked Cuomo if he took responsibility for these deaths. As soon as his mouth opened, however, he blamed Republicans for playing politics.
Ruhle quickly interrupted, telling Cuomo that “these are people’s lives, people’s parent’s lives.”
Cuomo then claimed that New York had more people die in nursing homes than anywhere else because they had more people die. He then pivoted to blaming the entire federal government for being late with their European travel ban, saying they failed to realize the virus was coming from Europe which allowed 3 million people to bring the virus into New York in January, February and March.
But even if that were true, it doesn’t excuse his policy of sending covid-infected elderly patients back to the nursing homes, where the disease spread and killed 6,300 people. It was a terrible policy decision and he’s clearly evading the question. And as we know, they had plenty of beds that went unused in both the overflow hospital and the Navy ship that was parked on the coast.
I’ll give Ruhle props for doing a much better job at holding Cuomo accountable for this than did ABC News anchor Amy Robach last week, who came just short of professing her love for him. I like how Ruhle framed the question and how she didn’t pull back just because it was a Republican investigation. In fact she seemed to give it legitimacy by reminding Cuomo this is about people’s lives. Kudos to her.

Comments