New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has won widespread praise for his handling of the coronavirus outbreak in his state — a state which has become the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States. But one prominent public official is reportedly not a fan of Cuomo — Donald Trump.
According to a new report published by The Daily Beast, the president believes that during the crisis, Cuomo has not acted sufficiently "good and respectful" toward him.
Even as Trump on Tuesday publicly claimed that the country was "near the end" of the battle against the deadly virus, and called for businesses and other public establishments such as churches in the United States to reopen by Easter on April 12, the state of New York has seen its total coronavirus cases double every three days.
As of Tuesday morning, the state had recorded 157 deaths from coronavirus cases, with nearly 26,000 total cases, including approximately 15,000 in New York City alone, according to a New York Times report.
At a press briefing, as quoted by The New York Times, Cuomo was sharply critical of the Trump administration's response, saying that the federal government had provided the state only 400 new ventilators — essential equipment for treating people affected by the often-devastating respiratory ailment caused by the virus.
"You want a pat on the back for sending 400 ventilators," the governor said at the briefing. "What are we going to do with 400 ventilators when we need 30,000 ventilators?"
Trump quickly lashed back at Cuomo during a lengthy interview broadcast by Fox News on Tuesday, accusing the governor of "complaining" on his "show." He then falsely accused him of earlier refusing to purchase ventilators from the government "at a great price," according to The New York Times.
In the Fox News appearance, the president said that federal aid to states for the coronavirus outbreak was "a two-way street," adding that "they have to treat us well, too," as quoted by The Washington Post.
"If you're good and respectful to [Trump], he will treat you the same—it's that simple," one White House official told The Daily Beast.
Trump has also privately referred to Cuomo as "nasty," according to The Daily Beast.
At a White House press briefing on Tuesday, Dr. Deborah Birx — a top scientist on Trump's coronavirus task force — announced that anyone who has recently visited New York City should self-quarantine for 14 days immediately after departing the city, due to a significant chance of contracting coronavirus there.
But when asked whether his administration had given Cuomo or other New York state officials advance notice of the self-quarantine warning, the president said that "we're talking to them about it."