A tweet from last July written by CNN anchor Chris Cuomo that knocked Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis reemerged Thursday as his brother’s nursing home scandal in New York continues to develop.
The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times both published bombshell reports alleging that the Cuomo administration altered data that obscured the true number of nursing home deaths that took place in the Empire State.
Sources told WSJ that a July report “focused only on residents who died inside long-term-care facilities, leaving out those who had died in hospitals after becoming sick in nursing homes.”
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According to WSJ, the data change, which was done by state health officials at the direction of Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s top advisers, resulted in 6,432 nursing home deaths, which was a “significant undercount.”
The Times’ reporting suggests that the conflict over the July report was also tied to the governor’s aspirations of writing a book about his “leadership” touting his response to the coronavirus outbreak.
Beth Garvey, a special counsel and senior adviser to Cuomo, claimed that “out-of-facility data” – meaning the deaths in hospitals – was omitted from the July report after the state Department of Health “could not confirm it had been adequately verified.”
“This did not change the conclusion of the report, which was and is that the March 25 order was ‘not a driver of nursing home infections or fatalities.’”
She added: “COVID Task Force officials did not request that the report conclude the March 25 order played no role; in fact Task Force Members, knowing the report needed to withstand rigorous public scrutiny were very cautious to not overstate the statistical analysis presented in the report. Overall, ensuring public confidence in the conclusion was the ultimate goal of DOH and the COVID Task Force in issuing the report.”
The “Cuomo Prime Time” anchor took to Twitter last July to raise doubts about the data coming from Florida, which saw a decrease in COVID cases at the time.
“Can we trust the data from florida’s governor?” Cuomo asked.
Cuomo’s tweet is just one example of the many attacks DeSantis faced from the mainstream media over his response to the coronavirus outbreak while virtually all outlets ignored the brewing New York nursing home scandal that was plaguing the prominent Democratic governor.
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“Still remember this CNN host promoting a baseless conspiracy about Florida’s data to explain results he didn’t understand while his brother in NY was actively manipulating data to deceive the public,” conservative writer A.G. Hamilton reacted to Cuomo’s tweet.
“How embarrassing, but utterly typical of a media narrative that was wholly detached from reality and blatantly so pretty much from the beginning,” National Review editor Rich Lowry similarly expressed.
CNN says it has barred Chris Cuomo from covering his relative after admitting they lifted the “rule” in the early months of the pandemic for the host to conduct the gushy interviews.
The “Cuomo Prime Time” host did briefly acknowledge the controversies surrounding his brother in an awkward address to viewers on Monday, saying he was “aware of what’s going on with my brother, and obviously, I cannot cover it because he is my brother.”
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“Now, of course, CNN has to cover it,” Cuomo said. “They have covered it extensively, and they will continue to do so. I have always cared very deeply about these issues, and profoundly so. I just wanted to tell you that.”