Cuomo Pushes Back on McConnell’s Suggestion of States Declaring Bankruptcy

April 23, 2020 Updated: April 23, 2020

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo criticized Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) suggestion that some states experiencing financial woes during the COVID-19 pandemic could declare bankruptcy.

“This is one of the really dumb ideas of all time,” Cuomo told reporters in Albany on Thursday.

Federal lawmakers not wanting to fund state and local governments is a “short-sighted” decision, the governor charged, arguing the funds go in part to police officers, firefighters, and teachers.

New York is one of a number of states struggling financially due to a significant drop in economic activity after governors across the nation imposed lockdown measures in a bid to slow the spread of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, a novel coronavirus that emerged from mainland China last year and causes the COVID-19 disease.

If states like New York, California, or Michigan declare bankruptcy, the market would fall even further, the New York Democrat alleged. “You will see a collapse of this national economy,” he said.

McConnell said during a radio interview this week that he would support states declaring bankruptcy.

“I would certainly be in favor of allowing states to use the bankruptcy route. It saves some cities. And there’s no good reason for it not to be available,” he said.

“My guess is their first choice would be for the federal government to borrow money from future generations to send it down to them now so they don’t have to do that. That’s not something I’m going to be in favor of.”

Epoch Times Photo
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) at a press conference in Washington on April 21, 2020. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)

A press release from McConnell’s office described some of his comments as talking about “stopping blue state bailouts.”

“I said yesterday we’re going to push the pause button here, because I think this whole business of additional assistance for state and local governments needs to be thoroughly evaluated. You raised yourself the important issue of what states have done, many of them have done to themselves with their pension programs. There’s not going to be any desire on the Republican side to bail out state pensions by borrowing money from future generations,” McConnell said.

Many of the most populous states in the nation are run by Democratic governors and often choose the Democratic contender for president. Those states have been the hardest hit by the CCP virus, including New York, New Jersey, and Michigan.

Cuomo argued that the pandemic isn’t the right time to get into political disagreements, but minutes later said that New York state puts more money into “the federal pot” compared to Kentucky, which takes more money from the federal government than in puts in, he said.

“Senator McConnell: Whose getting bailed out here? It’s your state that is living on the money that we generate,” Cuomo claimed.

McConnell’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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