If President Donald Trump wants to ever come back to New York City, where he has a multitude of real estate and personal ties, he better have an army, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. Cuomo called an emergency press conference after the president threatened to pull federal funds from what he called “lawless” cities, including New York, Washington, D.C., Seattle and Portland.
“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 said. “He can’t have enough bodyguards to walk through New York City, people don’t want to have anything to do with him.”
In a five-page memo, the Trump administration threatened to pull funding from the “lawless” cities, which also happen to be overseen by Democrats, a point that Trump has repeatedly referenced, if they don’t begin to maintain order following protests and spikes in crime.
"As a result of these State and local government policies, persistent and outrageous acts of violence and destruction have continued unabated in many of America’s cities, such as Portland, Seattle, and New York,” the memo states.
Cuomo slammed the memo, saying, “It is more of the same from him. It’s political, it is gratuitous. And it’s illegal. But it is another attempt to kill New York City. Cuomo then cited President Gerald Ford, who in the 1970s, told New York City to essentially “drop dead,” after the city begged for money to pull itself out of bankruptcy.
“President Ford said drop dead. President Trump has been actively trying to kill New York City since he’s been elected,” Cuomo said. Cuomo, like Trump, is from Queens and the two have had a long battle of words with each other. Cuomo later in the press conference walked back his remarks about the president needing protection.
“My comment about the president and bodyguards in New York City, all I’m saying is that he is persona non grata in New York City. And I think he knows that. And he’ll never come back to New York, because New Yorkers will never forget how gratuitously mean he has been to New Yorkers and how many times he’s tried to kill the city that gave him his start and birthed him. That’s what I meant about the bodyguards," Cuomo said.
Cuomo said that Trump’s apparent disdain with his hometown could be personal because the city rejected his administration and has protested much of his presidency, including the Women’s Marches, March for Our Lives, and recent protests in the wake of the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Aurbery.
“I think it’s because he is from New York City and New York City rejected him, always,” Cuomo said. “He was dismissed as a clown in New York City; those who know him best, like him least.”