Jun 16, 2020

NY Governor Andrew Cuomo June 16 Press Conference Transcript

Andrew Cuomo Press Conference
RevBlogTranscriptsPolitical TranscriptsNY Governor Andrew Cuomo June 16 Press Conference Transcript

Governor of New York Andrew Cuomo held a press briefing on June 16. Cuomo gave the okay for the US Open to be held in August in New York. Read the full news briefing speech transcript with all updates here.

 

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Governor Andrew Cuomo: (00:00)
Good news today, good news on the numbers, good news on the facts. Today is day 108 since the coronavirus crisis started, for those of you who are counting. Day 23 since the civil unrest caused by Mr. Floyd’s murder. So we have two different situations that are going on. We’re handling both separately. There is obviously a convergence at one point. New York, we pride ourselves on being the progressive capitol. Progressive capitol means in action, right? Not just in words, not in rhetoric, but actually in results. I’m very excited about the New York State Police Reform & Reinvention Collaborative. What this will do is take all the concerns that are out there, and have local governments sit down at the table, bring the police department in, bring the community members in, and design the police department that they want for their community.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (01:11)
All the questions that you hear being raised … What should the police do? What are the right functions for the police? What should the budget before the police? What should the staffing before the police? What should the use-of-force policy be? Defund the police. How much is the appropriate amount for our communities to spend on police? These are all questions that you have to sit down and figure out and decide together. That’s why the word “collaborative.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (01:46)
Why does this have to be done? It has to be done because the relationship is frayed, right? All these protests. What does that say? It says the relationship is frayed. Well, it shouldn’t be, but it is. This is a relationship between the police and the community, and when one party to a relationship says the relationship isn’t working, then it’s not working. By definition, it’s not working. When one party says it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. It doesn’t help to say, “Well, I don’t know why you say the relationship isn’t working. I don’t know why you say there’s no trust, there’s no respect in the relationship.” If one party to the relationship says it doesn’t work, then it doesn’t work. That’s life.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (02:50)
The relationship between the police in the community isn’t working. Why? Because the community says it isn’t working. A lot of the police say it’s not working. But it is about respect, and it is about trust, and that has to be restored. And it’s not going to be restored until everyone comes to the table and decides a way forward. There is no one size fits all. I’m not going to tell local police departments across this state … We have 500. I’m not going to tell 500 local communities what they should do. But they should do whatever they need to do to restore that relationship, and have a police department that the community supports. Otherwise, it’s not going to work.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (03:42)
That is the real work of reform, right? Protest. We’re unhappy. I’m articulating it. I’m expressing it. Second step is action, is change, and addressing those concerns. And that has to be done. We set a deadline for it in New York. It has to be done by April 1. So there were 289 days and counting for communities to go through that process.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (04:16)
Reverend Sharpton talked about demonstration, legislation, reconciliation. Demonstration; legislation is making the change; and then reconciliation. We have 289 days to do the legislation on a local level. And once you have the legislation, and you have a relationship that works for both parties, then you can have reconciliation. But this has to be done, and it has to be done community by community. And this is the hard work of leadership in government. Put everyone at the table, figure it out.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (05:05)
On the reopening, New York’s path forward is dictated by the facts. We said that from day one. There’s no political theory here with dealing with the virus. The virus doesn’t understand Democratic politics, Republican politics. It’s a virus. It’s a public health issue. It deals with facts, and that’s what we’ve been using to decide what we do from day to day. The facts in New York are very, very good, and I am so proud of what the people in this state have done.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (05:45)
At this point, with the phased reopenings, we look at the testing on a daily basis because we’re making decisions on a daily basis. And you see the past five days, New York City was 1.2 yesterday. When we started opening New York city, 1.5, 1.7, 1.4, 1.3, 1.2. So the number hasn’t gone up. If anything, it’s relatively constant. You’re going to see those little ups and downs. That’s basically true all across the board. You see little fluctuations, but nothing concerning. We have the lowest number of hospitalizations since we started. Amen. And we have the lowest number of deaths since we started. Once again, same numbers yesterday, but on the three day average, we are at a new low. And you want to talk about congratulations and something to celebrate, that is something to celebrate. And we’re basically at a number that is so low that it may even be statistically questionable because when you get down to 24, you’re talking about literally how doctors decide a cause of death, in some situations that may have multiple reasons behind it.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (07:25)
So we went up the mountain. We came down the mountain. That is the configuration of the mountain that we climbed together. The highest mountain. And we did it with a smart reopening. We have done over three million tests now in the state of New York. More tests than any other state, more tests than any country per capita. We do two types of tests. We do diagnostic tests, which are are you positive or negative today, and we do antibody tests, which are have you had the virus at any point.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (08:07)
We just did another sample on antibody tests, a 12,000 test sample, which is a very large sample all across the state to find out where we’ve been. 12,000 starting 5-1 to 6-13, so about six weeks. We did 12,000 samples to see where we are today versus where we were six weeks ago. Overall, the number in the state has gone up about a point. Positive, last time we did the survey, was 12.3 statewide. It’s now 13.4. So, statewide, we’ve gone up a point. New York City has gone up about 1.6%. Long Island has gone up 2.7%. Hudson Valley basically flat. Mohawk Valley has gone up 2.8%. Western New York down 2.8%. These numbers are telling and are significant because we watch the numbers. We watched the numbers on a day to day basis, but we watch them geographically also, and these are numbers that local communities should pay heed to.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (09:32)
New York City … It’s not good to see the number going up, but it’s manageable. Long Island we have to watch. Mohawk Valley we have to watch. And congratulations Western New York and the other areas that actually declined.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (09:53)
When you look at the increases by race, you see the African- American number is higher, Latino numbers higher-

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (10:03)
[inaudible 00:10:00] American number is higher, Latino number’s higher and that’s something we’ve been talking about. You further snapshot New York City you can see the same basic factors and patterns in the numbers borough by borough. Bronx is up. Staten Island is down. Brooklyn is up a little bit, Queens is up a little bit. With these numbers, again, the numbers look very good statewide. They look very good for the regions, some areas better than others. But there’s always been a variance from region to region. We’re going to allow hospitals to accept the visitors at their discretion. This was always a balance of public health versus the personal relationships and people who were in hospitals who desperately want to see loved ones and loved ones who want to see people in hospitals. But we’re going to allow hospitals to start accepting visitors at their discretion pursuant to state guidelines that have limited visits, PPE, temperature checks, et cetera.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (11:22)
Obviously we need to be careful, but we’ll allow visitors in hospitals. Same thing with group homes. This Friday, the group homes can allow visitors. It is up to the discretion of the group home. They have to tell the state if they’re allowing visitors and again, they have to follow state guidelines, masks, et cetera. We’ve reviewed the Capital Region data and we’re going to go to Phase III tomorrow in the Capital Region. So we’re excited about that. We’re excited about the US Open, is going to be held in Queens, August 31st to September 13th. It will be held without fans, but we can watch it on TV. And I’ll take that. The Tennis Authority is going to be taking extraordinary precautions, but that’s going to occur in Queens. Again, it will be televised, but no fans there. There were two theories on the reopening when we started and they were just theories and nobody knew.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (12:38)
One theory was we should reopen immediately. This was all overstated. There was nothing to worry about. Just reopen and reopen now. That was a theory and there were political overtones to the theory, right? And there was a second theory, which said, you can’t reopen right away, you’ll increase the spread of the virus, you should phase the reopening and you should follow the data and the facts on the spread of the virus on reopening. Those were two very different theories. And we had political debates about those two theories. And we had competing demonstrations right here in front of the Capitol. And there’d be one group that said, “Reopen.” And you guys would ask questions, “Well, they say reopen, why don’t you reopen? Don’t you think they’re right?” And the next day the other group would come, “Don’t reopen immediately. Have a phased reopening.” And then you’d say, “Well, why don’t you do a phased reopening? Aren’t they right?”

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (13:45)
But there were two very different theories and different states did different things and different elected officials took different postures and argued two different postures. I said, “I think the phased reopening makes more sense.” That was my position. And I said, “It wasn’t a political theory. It was a science-based theory because we’re dealing with a virus.” But, we had a political debate. Nobody knew who was right. Nobody knew who was wrong. Well now you know. Why? Because you tested the theory. You went into a laboratory and you tested it. And some places opened with very little control and some places opened on a phased reopening that was driven by the data, right? So now we actually know what happened. Now we don’t have to say, “Well, maybe, maybe, maybe.” Now you can just look at the numbers and the numbers should say, the results say, that it has been better for public health and better for the economy when you have a phased reopening and you follow the metrics.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (15:09)
As we sit here today, 21 states are seeing an increase. As we sit here. Why? They reopened quickly, they did not have the same phases, they did not have the same controls. They’re seeing the number of cases go up. That is a fact. It is a fact. What then happens is, there are articles about the virus is increasing, the cases are increasing. That destabilizes the market. And then the market actually responds in the negative. And that actually hurts the economy, right? From a public health point of view, the number of projected deaths because of these reopenings and the spike in the virus have increased dramatically. The projections by these scientific groups, they change the projections based on the spread of the virus.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (16:36)
So ask yourself, how much have the projections changed since they have the data on the virus spreading? IHME, which is the Washington-based model, Gates-funded model, which is the model that the White House apparently follows. Deaths by August, in April 17th, they projected 60,000, April 29th, 72,000, June 15th, they project 149,000. That’s roughly 90,000 more deaths. 90,000 more deaths. Why? Because the spread of the virus has increased. That’s the public health consequence. Why did their projection go from 60 to 149,000? Because the spread of the virus increased. Those are not Democratic numbers. Those are not Republican numbers. Those are just numbers my friends. And we’re not talking about 1000 deaths. We’re not talking about 2000 deaths. We’re talking about tens of thousands of deaths by that projection.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (18:21)
Last week, they projected 169,000 deaths by October. Last week. This week, 201,000 deaths. In one week, they went up 30,000 deaths. In one week. Based on what? Based on the increase in the virus’s transmission. That’s why the phased reopening was always smaller and New York State from a website that is run by the founders of Instagram, they study the rate of transmission of the virus. We had the highest rate of transmission. Today, New York State has the lowest rate of transmission of any state. These are not theories anymore. These are just undeniable facts. You tested the theory. You now have results. Anyone can say anything. I can sit here and say, “I have blonde hair, blue eyes, and a tiny button nose.” I can say that. But then I run into a problem-

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (20:02)
But then I run into a problem, which are the obvious facts that defy what I’m saying. “Well, he said he has blonde hair, blue eyes, and a tiny little button nose.” “Yes. Except I’m looking at him and he doesn’t.” “Well, I know, but the governor said he had blonde hair, blue eyes and a tiny button nose.” Now, you can say, “Governor says he has blonde hair, blue eyes and tiny button nose.” I would say you might want to add a line that says, “However, he doesn’t.” Right? So, you can have a theory, but then you have facts and these are facts.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (20:44)
So, what does it tell us in New York? Stay the course. We were right. We have the lowest rate of transmission. The phase reopening is working. Stay the course stay. Stay the course means you have to stay smart and you have to stay responsible, and we all have to stay responsible. We’re going to phase three in the capital region. Employers be smart, store owners be smart, employees be smart, individuals be smart, local governments be smart and do your job. And to everyone stay smart because smart works. Smart normally works in life by the way. But smart works as a collective and smart works for a society and smart works for New York. Wear a mask and be New York tough, smart, united, disciplined, and most of all, loving.

Speaker 1: (21:46)
[crosstalk 00:01:46]. Governor, how can people be assured that the information that they share with contact tracing is going to be protected? There’s privacy concerns as well as some people who are worried that their information is going to be shared with ICE or law enforcements. How can people know that it’s going to be protected?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (22:06)
There is certain information that is not protected, and they’re told that when they fill it out. So basic demographic data is not protected because we want to know… The information I give you here is based on the tests. So that data by definition is not protected. You’re a woman, your ethnicity, where you live, your zip code, that is not protected. But the other items that are on the healthcare privacy are fully protected. There’s no way information being shared with any federal immigration agency or anything like that.

Speaker 2: (22:45)
Governor, I’ve seen as regions open in the phases we’re getting questions. You said capital region is onset to go to phase three this week. In terms of events like the State Fair in Syracuse, in terms of the Track in Saratoga Springs. Since we are seeing this progress, a lower infection rate, are you any closer on determining whether these large scale events can happen? That’s question one, and question two is you announced today that visitations will resume in hospitals and in group homes. After talking to a lot of families this week I know you’ve heard a lot of the stories that were coming out of these places. You have said multiple times that we could fall back. If people aren’t following the rules, we could fall back.

Speaker 2: (23:39)
It’s been brought to the public’s attention that in these group homes and in the hospitals over this period of time where people can visit people in the hospitals and in the group homes, they basically didn’t have an advocate by not having their family come visit. So we know that some nursing homes across the state on a regular basis without COVID, they had issues with not caring for the people in these homes. So, if we are to fall back, and say there’s a spike somewhere, will you remove visitation again in the future? And are these conversations that you’re having?

Speaker 2: (24:18)
I mean, it’s a pretty good argument that somebody should be able to have an advocate if they’re in the hospital. They should be able to have somebody checking in on them. And I know I just gave you two questions that have a lot for you to think about, but people want to know about these large scale events. And they want to know about this visitation because these are two really big topics.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (24:36)
Yeah. But they know everything already. They know the phases of the reopening. They know large scale events are the most susceptible place and most dangerous place for a viral transmission. They know we have phase one, phase two, phase three, phase four. They know that the phases measure the essential nature of the business and the risk of the business. So they know the large gatherings are in phase four. They know that because it’s on every website, every conversation we’ve had. And if people are not smart and are reckless and are not disciplined, yes, the virus will go up. That’s what will happen. That’s what we’re seeing in those other States. And that’s why I work every day to make sure people don’t get reckless and non-disciplined. And we don’t see the virus spike, and we don’t go back to where we were. [inaudible 00:25:35].

Speaker 3: (25:37)
Doctors are seeing COVID patients testing positive for symptoms, then maybe testing negative, and then having symptoms again, in some cases, or maybe testing positive yet again. And there are also reports of people who are sick with COVID maybe for months, maybe not requiring hospitalization, but seeing symptoms for a long period of time. I guess, for the health commissioner, what is New York seeing and learning about these issues and for the Governor, how is the state going to protect elderly or you need to compromise workers who are afraid to go back to work because of the risk and what we don’t know. We’re hearing these individuals ask for protections in New York state law like other states are doing.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (26:11)
Yeah. I’ll ask the doctor to chime in. You’re right basically on both. We don’t know a lot about this COVID virus and the facts keep changing the more we learn. Originally, we were told if a person was infected and they had the antibodies that they couldn’t be reinfected. Now they’re not so sure about that. And now they think maybe you can be reinfected, even though you were infected once. We were told that once you were infected and you had the antibodies, that was basically it. Now we’re seeing cases, especially in children where they got infected, they had the antibodies, and then they had a response after the fact, an inflammatory response, that’s the Kawasaki-like syndrome that we’re studying. So yes, the facts change the more they learn, and that’s why this is nothing to play with, this COVID virus. The people who say, “It’s not a big deal. Unless you’re a senior citizen, don’t worry about it.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (27:19)
Yeah. That’s what they said, and now we have children who have an inflammatory response problem. I urge every one caution. There’s a lot that we don’t know. I have… I would wager that in the coming months, we’re going to find other reactions to people who had this virus that they don’t yet diagnose, and don’t yet understand. Dr. [inaudible 00:07:48].

Dr. Zucker: (27:49)
I would add one key point here also that the fact is that we don’t know all the different effects this virus has on all different parts of the body. And when I’ve spoken with many of the experts with all the different subspecialists out there, every one of them has said that they are looking within their area of expertise to see if there’s anything specific about this virus and how it affects them. Yesterday I had an opportunity to talk to some of the NIH scientists about this also as well, and we’re going to learn a lot more as time goes on. We have a lot of patients who have had this. There are many studies going on nationally and internationally to try to get a better understanding. When the end of the year comes, next year comes, we’ll have a better understanding of the overall aspect of this Coronavirus.

Speaker 3: (28:29)
[inaudible 00:28:30]. Governor, first of all are you supporting-

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (28:33)
Go ahead.

Speaker 3: (28:33)
… do you think that there should be protections for health workers or not?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (28:35)
Can I just answer this question? Yeah, go ahead.

Speaker 4: (28:39)
If she’s got a follow up she can go ahead.

Speaker 3: (28:40)
Well, I just wanted [inaudible 00:28:40] the answer on the question. I just didn’t get one. I was just wondering if you think that elderly or compromised workers should have protections in state law, if they’re afraid of going back to work, some other states-

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (28:50)
You want to answer that?

Speaker 3: (28:50)
… are passing protections.

Dr. Zucker: (28:52)
So I think that we are looking at the issues when it comes to the population, whether they’re an individual who is elderly, whether it’s somebody who has HIV, other immunocompromised conditions, someone’s on chemotherapy. And we have taken efforts across society on all these issues with other challenges that we’ve had in the past when it comes to individuals with diseases. So, I think that we always are concerned about the protections for any individual with [crosstalk 00:29:23].

Speaker 4: (29:26)
You mentioned visitation in hospitals. You mentioned visitation in group homes. Is it safe to assume that nursing homes are not included in this, that you’re going to-

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (29:30)
They’re not included in this. No.

Speaker 4: (29:33)
And why not?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (29:34)
We’re still studying it. There’s still a high risk. And when the health department advises me that it’s safe, we’ll do it. I understand the demand. I understand the desire, but the health department doesn’t think the reward justifies the risk at this point. Is that right?

Dr. Zucker: (29:53)
We are studying that right now.

Speaker 4: (29:53)
[crosstalk 00:29:55]. When do you anticipate having some sort of conclusion?

Dr. Zucker: (29:58)
So, what we’re doing at this point is we’re looking… We know we had a pilot-

Dr. Zucker: (30:02)
… at this point, as we look we know we had a pilot program for the hospitals. We’re taking all the information that we gained from the hospital pilot program, and we are looking at how that would apply to other populations, other groups, nursing homes, as well as other facilities.

Press: (30:15)
Is it possible to have a pilot program for nursing homes at some point?

Dr. Zucker: (30:17)
We were looking at all the different options.

Press: (30:20)
Sorry. Just a question for Dr. Zucker, or you, Governor, if you want to answer it. Do you have an update on your investigation into nursing homes with the AG’s office? Have you found anything in particular that verifies your report on this account?

Dr. Zucker: (30:31)
We’re working with the AG’s office on this. We’ve had incredible number of inspections into all of the nursing homes, in the hundreds. Whenever there’s an issue we raise this, we go in there, we do whatever is necessary and take all to the fullest extent of the law, do what we have to do to make sure the individuals in those nursing homes are safe and they have …

Press: (30:50)
Dr. Zucker, do you think it’s all right for people to not be able …

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (30:56)
Excuse me, one second.

Press: (30:56)
… to have an advocate?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (30:57)
Excuse me.

Press: (30:57)
Do you think it’s right for people not to be able to have an advocate to go check on them in the nursing home?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (30:59)
I think everybody should have an advocate. Bernadette?

Bernadette: (30:59)
Governor …

Press: (31:02)
So you think visitation should be allowed then in nursing homes?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (31:05)
I don’t think they should have an advocate that could kill them or someone else. I wouldn’t call that advocate.

Press: (31:10)
What if they wear PPE and a mask?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (31:15)
I’m sorry. Bernadette had a question. Go ahead.

Bernadette: (31:15)
Well, you can answer that if you want.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (31:16)
Go ahead.

Bernadette: (31:17)
Okay. So should children in New York City be allowed to play in playgrounds? There’s been multiple videos of councilmen, state-elected officials who have been cutting bolts and allowing kids to play, and these elected officials are saying there’s some sort of hypocrisy going on here because if people are allowed to congregate in large settings like the protests that we’ve seen and also on beaches, why shouldn’t kids be allowed to play? And Mayor DeBlasio, do you think that he should open up these city parks and do you support that?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (31:46)
Yeah, playgrounds are a decision that would vary across the state, different regions are in different situations. What works in Albany, what works in Buffalo may not work in New York City. So on playgrounds we said it’s up to the local governments and they have to figure it out. If you have a dispute among local officials in New York City, they should sit down and figure it out, but it’s up to the local government.

Bernadette: (32:13)
What do you think about that though? Because again, there’s been people on beaches, people are congregating in protests, but why not parks? Could they be sanitized? You guys have sanitized the MTA.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (32:23)
Yeah, I understand the point, and that is the question for the local governments. I’m not going to sit here and second guess a local government. Some decisions we make statewide. If it’s going to be particular to a locality ,and the facts have to be judged by that locality or in that locality, then I leave it to the local government. I’m not going to second guess a local government.

Bernadette: (32:46)
But would you let your kids play in a park right now, as opposed to going down to a protest?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (32:51)
My kids are older. They do what they want to do. I wish I had that kind of control over my kids.

Press: (32:58)
When it comes to the phase of reopening, early on you said that the two-week increments that were laid out weren’t necessarily set in stone. They could be shortened based off the data. Capitol Region, elected officials, a lot of Democrats and Republicans are now saying, why has that not happened? Because we’ve been a few days behind the first wave of people, they felt that Friday of last week we could have hit phase three.

Press: (33:20)
And in addition to that, they’re now saying that the indoor portions of malls, with certain regulations, there are blueprints that they say would be safe to reopen because so many people are employed by them. Based on the data, if you’re familiar with the Capital Region data, is the general consensus, the bipartisan consensus, correct, that we should be further along in this area than we are?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (33:41)
Yeah. First on politicians saying they reviewed the public health data, and this is what they think, here’s my advice to politicians. Stay with what you’re qualified to do, and don’t do what you’re not qualified to do. I don’t review the health data myself. I mean, I review it, but I’m not a doctor. I’m not a public health official. I’m not an epidemiologist. I don’t study infectious diseases. I don’t study global pandemics. So my review of the numbers is just an amateurish review, right?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (34:21)
I listen to the commissioner. I listen to global pandemic experts that we bring in to look at the data, and I follow their advice. So I get the politics, I get the political arguments, but this is not a political discussion. This is a public health discussion about spread of a virus. So I defer to the public health experts and I would suggest that they do the same.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (34:58)
I mean, everybody can have an opinion. I go to the doctor’s office. They give me a diagnosis. I have my own opinion about whether or not the doctor’s right, but I follow the doctor’s diagnosis. I do it here. On the malls, I get their point and we’re looking at that. The big if there is, if you follow the rules, right, could you open a mall with rules that would not have gatherings in a mall? Yes, that is theoretically possible. Can you have bars and restaurants serve alcohol where people pick it up and don’t congregate? Yes, that is theoretically possible. There is a big variance between what is theoretically possible and what can actually happen in reality. Well, we’ll have the rules and we’ll enforce the rules. Yeah, I understand that, but that’s also theoretical. Don’t worry. We’ll enforce it, right?

Press: (36:02)
The area officials, though, are saying that they’re listening to, in a similar way to what you do with Dr. Zucker, their department of health commissioner, so they don’t really have anything [inaudible 00:06:10]. They’re saying, “This is only based on the data.” And I say bipartisan because there aren’t really politics involved there. It’s really just about getting people back to work.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (36:21)
Yeah, but there is politics involved in everything. When you’re dealing with elected officials, you’re dealing with politics, right? That’s the business they are in. And I get that, but we have the best public health experts, I think, available globally, who we rely on here. I spent a lot of time talking to people, literally all around the world, people who worked in China, people who worked with Italy, people who worked with South Korea, and we’ve introduced some of them to you.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (36:57)
And we just follow the best medical scientific advice that we can get. I agree with elected officials who say, “I want to reopen as soon as possible.” I want to reopen as soon as possible. And we are reopening as soon as possible. Possible as determined by the data. And also, the proof is in the pudding. Look at our progress. Look at how we’re doing on reopening.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (37:27)
We are exactly where we said we would be on the phases. The data is good. Our rate of transmission is the lowest in the United States, having been the highest, right? At one point you can’t argue with the results. That was my point earlier. Well, this one thinks this, this one thinks this, this one says this, this one says that. Yeah, I know.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (37:52)
Now we know because we’re in the laboratory and we saw what happened and you have the numbers and you can study it. And we were right to do it by the numbers. And we’re still doing it by the numbers as reviewed and determined by the leading international public health experts. So, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (38:20)
I would like it to open faster than they would like it to open because we have this as a statewide consequence. Our budget gets worse every day that we don’t open. So no one is more aggressive than I am, but I’m not foolish either. Right? It’s aggressive, but not foolish. Let’s take one more.

Press: (38:44)
Minority Leader Flanagan announced that he’s resigning effective June 28th. Have you spoken with him and what are your thoughts on that?

Governor Andrew Cuomo: (38:50)
I wish him well. I did a lot of work him. He was senate leader and we did a lot of work, a lot of budgets together, passed a lot of good laws. I wish him well. I understand he’s going to open a new chapter in life and I wish him well. Thank you guys. Thank you very much.