New York Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo snapped late on Wednesday night after news broke that the Trump administration is beginning a review process to defund four cities — all run by Democrats — for not cracking down on riots and looting while also cutting budgets from police departments as violent crime surges.
“He better have an army if he thinks he’s gonna walk down the street in New York,” Cuomo responded in what many deemed was a threat toward the president. “New Yorkers don’t want to have anything to do with him.”
“My Administration will do everything in its power to prevent weak mayors and lawless cities from taking Federal dollars while they let anarchists harm people, burn buildings, and ruin lives and businesses,” Trump tweeted late on Wednesday. “We’re putting them on notice today.”
My Administration will do everything in its power to prevent weak mayors and lawless cities from taking Federal dollars while they let anarchists harm people, burn buildings, and ruin lives and businesses. We’re putting them on notice today. @RussVought45
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 3, 2020
Trump’s tweet came after the New York Post published a report that said that the administration is seeking to cut federal funding from New York City, Portland, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. The Post reported:
Trump on Wednesday signed a five-page memo ordering all federal agencies to send reports to the White House Office of Management and Budget that detail funds that can be redirected.
New York City, Washington, DC, Seattle and Portland are initial targets as Trump makes “law and order” a centerpiece of his reelection campaign after months of unrest and violence following the May killing of George Floyd by Minnesota police.
“My Administration will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones,” the memo stated. “To ensure that Federal funds are neither unduly wasted nor spent in a manner that directly violates our Government’s promise to protect life, liberty, and property, it is imperative that the Federal Government review the use of Federal funds by jurisdictions that permit anarchy, violence, and destruction in America’s cities.”
Before Cuomo made the remark threatening the president, he gave a 7-minute statement in which he made personal attacks on the president. Cuomo also pinned all the blame for his own much-maligned response to the coronavirus pandemic on the president, falsely claiming that Trump was “the cause” of the coronavirus in New York and accusing Trump of “actively” trying to “kill New York City.”
“First, from the point of view of New York City, this has been the worst president in history,” Cuomo claimed. “President has actively been trying to kill New York City ever since he’s been elected and it’s a personal animus as it normally is with the President. I think it’s because he is from New York City and New York City rejected him always. He was dismissed as a clown in New York City. Those who know him best like him least. That’s true about New York City. It’s true about his own family and I think that’s more and more clear to Americans.”
“Look, the best thing he did for New York City was leave. Good riddance, let him go to Florida, be careful not to get COVID,” Cuomo later added. “Also, the main situation that New York City had to deal with, that I had to deal with as Governor, was the COVID pandemic. Remember, COVID ambushed New York due to Trump’s negligence. It was his negligence that allowed the virus to ambush New York, and that’s not rhetorical.”
“He is the cause of COVID in New York,” Cuomo continued. “It is his negligence that brought it here and then his arrogance where he won’t provide state and local funding to help states and cities to recover from the pandemic that his negligence caused.”