President Trump has signed a memo stating that he may pull federal funds from "lawless" cities like New York. The document, which was obtained by the New York Post, also targets Portland, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., all which have been littered with riots and protests in the past few months.
“My Administration will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones,” the memo reads. “To ensure that Federal funds are neither unduly wasted nor spent in a manner that directly violates our Government’s promise to protect life, liberty, and property, it is imperative that the Federal Government review the use of Federal funds by jurisdictions that permit anarchy, violence, and destruction in America’s cities.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo called an emergency press conference on Wednesday after reading the document and responded to Trump with a threat of his own - one decidedly more violent in tone.
“He better have an army if he thinks he’s gonna walk down the street in New York. New Yorkers don’t want to have anything to do with him,” the governor reacted. “He can’t have enough bodyguards to walk through New York City, people don’t want to have anything to do with him.”
Cuomo also claimed that President Trump "has been actively trying to kill New York City since he’s been elected."
I found that odd. Sure, Trump has been critical of some of New York's tax-heavy policies that have driven businesses from the state. But he has often spoken highly of New Yorkers themselves. During the 2016 presidential debates, Trump snapped back at Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) when he made an unflattering comment about "New York values," recalling how New Yorkers "fought and fought and fought" after the September 11 terror attacks and that the world "loved" them.
Trump was a New Yorker for many years. When he was still a businessman living in Trump Tower, he spent years revitalizing the Big Apple by spearheading several renovations, including taking over an agonizingly slow and mismanaged city-run renovation project to reopen Central Park's Wollman Skating Rink. The city honored him for his work on the latter project in 1986. As the broadcaster at the time reported, Trump "accomplished in three and a half months, what the city couldn't do in six years."
And now, President Trump is right to take action that may spur New York to get its act together.
Gov. Cuomo is currently facing - and ignoring - calls for independent investigations into his March 25 nursing home mandate that forced facilities to accept COVID patients.