Opinion

The Media Could Have Saved Lives if They Covered Cuomo Half as Critically as They Did Trump’s Ice Cream

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Posted: Mar 09, 2021 11:53 AM
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The Media Could Have Saved Lives if They Covered Cuomo Half as Critically as They Did Trump’s Ice Cream

Source: Office of the NY Governor via AP

While tens of thousands of elderly New Yorkers were dying lonely deaths without their loved ones by their sides during the first months of the coronavirus pandemic, the media didn’t skip a beat gushing over “Love Gov” Andrew Cuomo.

If they had, they could have potentially saved thousands of lives.

In 2017, President Donald Trump invited reporters, including CNN, to a dinner at the White House as a gesture of goodwill to get to know them. Nobody can tell you what happened during that dinner, about any interesting tidbits journalists may have learned about what was happening at the top level of our government, but they can tell you how many scoops of ice cream the president consumed.

This is because for weeks following the dinner, there were hundreds of stories about how President Trump had two scoops of ice cream, while everyone else had one. Nobody asked for a second, of course, but the implication was that the president is rude and thoughtless, punishing the misbehaving media by giving them less ice cream.

If Cuomo’s handling of the coronavirus had faced half the level of scrutiny that the ice cream did, perhaps the public would have been informed and been able to protect themselves and their elderly loved ones. Instead, the governor was granted gushing segments with his brother on CNN, given an undeserved Emmy, and paraded around as the hero — up against the villain Trump.

Instead of asking questions and digging for answers, the media ran cover for Cuomo as New Yorkers suffered. The state is now a shell of the beautiful place that it once was.

The governor was even given a book deal on leadership by Crown Publishing that made the bestsellers list. No publisher in their right mind would have touched this if the media had been doing their job properly.

The dishonest partisan media knows the revelations about what was going on in nursing homes was disastrous for their reputations, perhaps that is why they are still avoiding coverage of it. Instead, they have focused nearly all of their attention on the sexual harassment claims against him, while continuing to avoid the blood that dripped from Cuomo’s hands onto their own.

According to a study published by the Media Research Center, “from the first network evening news mention of Cuomo’s nursing home scandal nearly ten months ago (on the May 11, 2020 NBC Nightly News) through Sunday night, the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts have devoted a mere 15 minutes, 35 seconds to the story — most of which came after the January 28, 2021 report by the state’s Attorney General, Letitia James, charging that the Cuomo administration vastly under-reported nursing home deaths.

“In contrast, in just the past 11 days those same broadcasts have devoted almost three times as much coverage — 44 minutes, 14 seconds — on allegations from several women that Cuomo sexually harassed them in recent years,” the report continued.

This isn’t an accident. Nobody in their right mind could possibly think that his highly inappropriate flirting is as bad as covering up the numbers of elderly nursing home residents who died after he forced the facilities to take people who tested positive for the virus. It is awful and reprehensible of course, but deserving of more coverage than 50,000 dead New Yorkers? Doubtful.

The only explanation for the corporate media’s bizarre prioritizing of coverage is that somewhere deep down they must know that their rush to valorize him aided and abetted his crimes. 

If only the media cared as much about their grandparents as they did about Trump’s ice cream. Who knows how different things could have been.

Adam Weiss is the CEO of AMW PR, a New York political strategy and communications firm. His firm has represented Kimberly Guilfoyle, Jim Brown, Judge Jeanine Pirro, Donald Trump Jr, Corey Lewandowski, David Bossie, Governor Haley Barbour, Pastor Darrell Scott and more.