New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday pushed back on President TrumpDonald John TrumpDefense industrial base workers belong at home during this public health crisis Maduro pushes back on DOJ charges, calls Trump ‘racist cowboy’ House leaders hope to vote Friday on coronavirus stimulus MORE‘s assertion that his state does not really need thousands more ventilators to fight the coronavirus outbreak in his state, saying “I operate on facts.”
“Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, but I don’t operate here on opinion, I operate on facts and on data and on numbers and on projections,” Cuomo said when asked about Trump’s comments the previous night.
Trump, speaking to Fox News host Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityTrump says ‘no way’ he’ll cancel GOP convention in August Trump questions need for 30,000 ventilators in New York Hannity challenges Mnuchin on coronavirus bill: Expanding unemployment benefits ‘angers my audience’ MORE, questioned whether the state, which is at the center of the coronavirus outbreak, really needed 30,000 more ventilators, which Cuomo has been pleading for from the Trump administration.
“I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators,” Trump said. “You know, you go into major hospitals, sometimes they’ll have two ventilators. And now all of a sudden they’re saying, ‘Can we order 30,000 ventilators?'”
Cuomo, speaking to reporters, did not mention Trump’s name in responding, but put the focus on the data he is acting on, while implying Trump is relying on “opinion” only.
Cuomo said projections from Cornell Weill, the CDC and McKinsey showed a stark picture that could require many thousands more ventilators.
Cuomo said earlier this week the state needs 30,000 ventilators and only has 11,000. He has urged Trump to use the Defense Production Act to direct companies to make more ventilators.
Trump has invoked the act but has yet to do it, and has said publicly that he sees it more as a tool of leverage.
The president on Friday, however, did tweet critically of General Motors and Ford that he wanted them to speed up their ventilator production. In the tweet, he threatened to use the Defense Production Act to compel them to do so.