Andrew Cuomo to President Trump: Mobilize the Military to Help Fight Coronavirus

The time is growing short and fewer options are available. Using federal troops to help create hospital beds is one we should try.

Comments: 236

  1. A good suggestion, the kind of effort to think ahead that is so sorely lacking from Trump's federal government.

  2. @newageblues I agree with you. Speak the truth.

  3. Using defense $ to domestically mobilize our excellent US Army Corps of Engineers is a wonderful idea. The Corps is a great resource that should be put to immediate use. There is no downside to over-reaction here. Using defense $ to build the wall is divisive -- using those same $ to fight the virus is unifying. Let's go!

  4. @Sports Medicine Yup - get those priorities straight. A few thousand critical illnesses and deaths are not important compared to a useless wall that might prevent entry a few whose lives are endanger from terrorists. What does un-American mean now?

  5. @Paul Who do you think you are talking to? If the state governors, I say good for you. If the guy in the WH, I ask, “what planet are you on?”

  6. @B. Rothman I'm saying the Army Corps of Engineers is a great resource for this need. I'm saying Go Governors Go! I'm thinking the man-child in the WH is worse than useless. I certainly hope this galvanizes the realization that we need medicare for all (with a profit top-up if you want/can). I'm embarrassed that the wealthiest nation in the world cannot provide a good level of healthcare for all its citizens. I hope this train-wreck of a situation is a catalyst for positive change.

  7. The fact that our governor must implore these actions from the President is terrifying evidence of the dearth of leadership from the top of our country. Since the President cannot cope with a constructive agenda, I hope that there will be some forces that prevent him from his pattern of deleterious decision making.

  8. @JayGee Yes, and imagine at a time like this, finding it necessary to close with a reminder that this is not personal.

  9. @CVP Right you are. And then he would still go into a defensive tizzy, cede some territory, or provoke a war. And would that war be with our enemies or our allies?

  10. @JayGee You really want troops answerable to Trump deployed on American soil nation wide? Really? You trust him that much? You trust him at all?

  11. This is a very good and sensible suggestion. Therefore, it is unlikely to be implemented.

  12. @Barbara Spot on. We're sort of at the "reaping what we sowed" moment. America's had its collective hands off the wheel for decades.

  13. Aside from denying responsibility for pretty much everything, trump’s most abhorrent comment was taking credit for the sharp rise in the stock market on Friday. It seems pretty obvious that the number of US coronavirus cases is artificially low because of the limited availability of test kits, despite trump’s promise, since walked back, that there are enough and anybody can get tested. Thanks a Governor Cuomo for taking leadership in steps to slow or stop the spread of the coronavirus and working with municipalities to deploy the National Guard. That’s an action that builds confidence in fighting this scourge. I agree. Deploy the military. Despite the dent the economy will take, close facilities and put restrictions in place to enhance social distancing measures. Even though most cases have been deemed mild, the elderly and immune-compromised may still suffer if they are exposed. We will be better off if the outbreak can be slowed and the impact shortened. The politics have to omitted, starting with trump’s blame shifting and lies. The president must standup and lead, even if it costs him in blows to his ego. So far, he has failed all Americans. I don’t blame him for the coronavirus, but he bears responsibility for the lack of planning and unified response. I hope it’s not too late.

  14. Governor Cuomo’s approach is a sound one that addresses some of the seriousness of what’s coming. There is little doubt that the US is days away from being in the same situation as Italy, France, Spain. It’s beyond distressing that Trump only listens to horrifically unqualified people Ike Jared Kushner. Senate Leader McConnell has Constitutionally defined powers to do presidential oversight but he refuses to. Congress needs to step up. There is a real risk that Trump will get the virus. Maybe it’s the extreme stress or he’s getting bad advice but he’s saying things that are just not true like that Google has 17,000 people working on the website. Congress should be making sure that Trump is making rational decisions.

  15. @Javaforce The fact that Trump is "saying things that are just not true" is actually a confirmation that he's as healthy as a horse. Lying like a rug has been his hallmark personality trait for 50 years or more. Trump's decisions have rarely been rational. His decisions have always been predicated on self-glorification.

  16. Only 1700 people at Google are working on the website.

  17. @Javaforce You are asking too much from the mesmerized Republicans.

  18. Please, Governor Cuomo, the President is already fully focused on the situation without your very good ideas. Just yesterday, Trump said “I was honored to see that the stock market set a record in a short period of time,” referring to Friday's stock market gains after his coronavirus handshaking and shared group-microphone press conference that extolled the virtues of Corporate America's CEO's and his promised Google website that is weeks away from reality. There's no one home at the White House. We're on our own, except for adult governors like yourself.

  19. @Socrates Call in the generals, they know how to mobilize and get personnel and gear where it needs to be. Mobilize them to fight this invisible enemy. There is clearly no centralized command and control. CDC is still a week behind focusing on China and Italy - and not France, Spain, South Korea, etc. Because CDC is so behind our Federal Agencies, following their lead, are still calling for us to go to work. The messages coming out of the government are hampering quick action in so many ways so I agree with the Governor - bring in Corps of Engineers - and their upper management!

  20. @Socrates Excellent post as always Socrates I think the State of New York should immediately license testing independent of the Federal Government. Let the Fed's take us to court. South Korea tests 10,000 people a day using German licensed test kits that they manufacture. Too much time has been lost to dereliction of duty to the American people. I don't care a rats ankle for the spectacle of politics. This is a national emergency being met by a failure of leadership at the Federal level. Gov. Cuomo, you have the budget you have the power you can do this - take charge. South Korea works with Kogene biotech, but there are others. We must act now. https://www.genomeweb.com/pcr/kogene-biotech-novel-coronavirus-test-gets-regulatory-approvals-korea#.Xm4hOXIpByx

  21. @Socrates Adult Governor like Cuomo ? Puh-leeze. He won't close the schools !!! How irresponsible is that ? He's grandstanding plain and simple.

  22. “Today, let’s work together as Americans. Time is short.” If only the intended reader appreciated that sentiment. Ideally, it would even be coming from our highest office. Unfortunately, in Trump we have a leader so partisan and so petty that he made a point of rebuking Mike Pence for having praised Jay Inslee’s response to coronavirus. We better have a Plan B for when these suggestions fall on deaf ears.

  23. @NM There is a Plan B: the 25th Amendment. But Pence and a majority of the Cabinet would have to place the interests of the public above Trump's (and Pence's) interest in reelection. Did you watch the Rose Garden news conference on Friday? We need a Plan C.

  24. Once we get out of this nightmare, the United States needs to seriously embark on an urgent project to completely reform its system of government to develop something that will work in the modern world. We are trying to run a 21st century country with an 18th century system of government. We are rapidly becoming a failed state.

  25. We need scientists involved with our government policy, to the point of heading task forces, not advising them. Scientists whose reputation and track record are based on theory testing and evidence analysis. This should include medical scientists, virologists, epidemiologists, as well as meteorologists, geologists, marine biologists, and climate scientists. Not Pence.

  26. While you're at it, maybe reform your electoral system. The primaries are from the age when you had to travel the entire country personally to present your case. It became unnecessary once electronic communications became common. The rest of the world look on in confusion (at a lot of things in America) at how it takes you two years to decide who's going to run for President. And the system has amply proven not to pick your best and brightest. Americans elections are such a circus that some foreign countries have dedicated TV programs just analysing them ['Planet America' on the Australian publically funded network ABC - no relation to American ABC. Two weekly programs].

  27. What “nightmare”? Let’s take the panic level down 100 fold. 300,000 people died of influenza in 2019. I get that this is much more transmissible. But “nightmare”? “Panic”? Let’s take a breath, starting with the Governor trying to score political points through his favorite media outlet.

  28. In addition to the Army Corp of Engineers, the Armed Forces medical corps should also be mobilized. Fourth year military medical students are virtually finished with all of their pre-MD training. They have all received their orders for active duty residency, which will start in July. They are all just killing time until they go on active duty. My son’s med school canceled all in-person activities. He had planned to go on a pre-graduation trip abroad, but now that has been canceled. Put these very well trained (at taxpayer expense) medical professionals to work by putting them on active duty early.

  29. As a third-year medical student in Canada I can tell you that within hours of our clinical activities being cancelled, more than half of our class had signed our names to a student-led document offering to help in any way needed on a volunteer basis. I’m sure that a sizeable portion of the 20,000 civilian fourth year medical students in the US would be happy to volunteer.

  30. @BCF and they are young , part of the demographic that can best handle it. It’s time to go to a war footing , all hands on deck.

  31. @BCF One of the major bottleneck is limited protective gears. From the congress hearing we are very low on these. Manufacturing takes time and it really needs federal level coordination to secure the supply chain. The federal government really has a lot to act on right now!

  32. Bravo Zulu Governor. A thousand times yes. Saving as many lives as possible is the only worthwhile goal. If we do not stand together we are surely doomed. The United States Navy is "a force for good". As is every branch of our services. We are 'armed' with compassion, talent, willpower and leadership. Most of all we understand shared sacrifice. I am likely to succumb to this virus. But, I want my wife and children to survive. For all the reasons I was willing to give my life for my country. President Trump, step aside. Let the dedicated professionals advise on the strategy. Forget the "economy." Understand how FDR worked to reorganize the resources and mobilized us to save the world. Now, it is far worse. The enemy is invisible. It does not vote. Except that it may not spare you. Non sibi, sed suis. Non sibi, sed patriae. We all are at the threshold of eternity.

  33. @USNA73 careful skipper you are making sense which the administration can’t abide. Folks like you and Dr Fauci will see repercussions when this event has passed. And I’m certain that it will pass. But make no mistake retribution will occur as well

  34. @USNA73: Sadly, Trump will not heed your advice. He cannot, because he is a psychopath and he was born that way, just like people with Down Syndrome for instance, were born that way. In that sense, Trump cannot be held accountable for what he is and what he does as a result. Unfortunately, whereas people with Down Syndrome are generally cheerful and moral people, psychopaths are a grave danger to society. They can't help themselves and neither can they be cured. Trump should be removed from office in the interest of the country, based on Amendment 25.4 of the Constitution and have Pence take over. Pence is far from perfect, but he will cooperate with experts to address the Corona virus threat and not contradict them and gaslight the American people the way Trump does because he's unable to change his lifelong ways.

  35. @Anna We raised two special needs children. It is our individual duty to protect and serve the least fortunate among us. Please do your part, no matter how small.The Talmud tells us: “He who saves a single life, saves the world entire.”

  36. Even if the President doesn't read this (can't, won't, refuses, whatever), others around him will. When an abundance of advice keeps coming at him from a growing number of sources, a tipping point of people around him will pressure him to take action. Keep the advice, ideas coming Mr. Cuomo, and from all leaders now across America. We need your expertise. Americans value your experience and capacity to lead, even if the loudest child in America does not.

  37. @Betsy Maybe Cuomo and DeBlasio will then close the schools soon following your logic....

  38. @Betsy Tweet it! He reads tweest. They're not too long for his attention span.

  39. I expect Trump will send out a nasty tweet about Cuomo failing, probably with an ethnic slur.

  40. It is imperative to perform testing at a large scale. As the governor states, our healthcare system is not designed to deal with thousands of patients at the same time. Until we know who has this virus or not, we are dealing with very dangerous unknowns. To our president and team.... Where are the millions of tests that were promised a week ago? Lastly, thank you Mr. Cuomo for your updates, responsiveness, and leadership.

  41. @BR " our healthcare system is not designed to deal with thousands of patients at the same time..." Right. It is designed to generate billions of profits in as short a time as possible...because anybody with any sense can see it's bound to implode. But, hey, with or without medical attention, billions of people die every day. Which is good for the planet, I guess, and for future generations...I hope...

  42. @BR It’s too late to catch up with the tests. Even if we got tests started in full force today (which won’t happen — it will be at least another month, maybe two), the virus is already brewing “bigly” enough that our hospitals are soon to be overwhelmed. At this point, we have to cut our losses with the tests and focus our efforts on social distancing and boosting health care capacity.

  43. Thank you Governor Cuomo for standing for us all. I also appreciate your putting aside differences for the good of everyone. This shows leadership and strength, which is what we need right now.

  44. Thank you Governor Cuomo! I hope that all governors ask for the same assistance in all states. It’s way past the time to play catch up.

  45. Agreed We need to do like China and we need to do it now: Move hundreds of billions of dollars to construct/retrofit new hospital facilities out of existing vacated infrastructure on military bases and in deserted shopping malls, and tool up mass manufacturing of ventilators, other medical equipment and tests as needed for these facilities. All attention should be there. This is like WWII, but the enemy is invisible

  46. Rather than build new structures local, state and federal governments need to utilize existing real estate structures to minimize the time constraints. There are plenty of vacant office buildings, unoccupied stores and other vacant building structures that can be retrofitted to serve as temporary medical facilities. Less than a mile from my residence there are several medical buildings that have been vacant for more than 5 years. Hopefully people in government at all levels are looking for solutions that already exist right in front of their faces.

  47. And who will staff these new facilities?

  48. BRAVO! A real governor with courage. Let's see if our President is up to the task.

  49. @SC Durham " Let's see if our President is up to the task." He's not. Never has been, never will be.

  50. @SC Durham Well, you know he’s not. :((

  51. Excellent advice, Governor! May I also suggest that the government train TSA workers to screen incoming travelers for coronavirus at airports instead of screening outgoing travelers? At this juncture, the imminent danger from coronavirus to our country’s well being is infinitely greater than travelers with weapons. May our government soon choose wisdom over chaos.

  52. I agree. Now that the pandemic is in full swing here in the U.S., we have to consider ways to slow the spread HERE. Allowing travel across domestic boarders should be highly regulated and controlled. Screen individuals leaving. If they test positive, they cannot travel and must be sent to their homes and quarantined. If they are returning home from a high risk state (ie, NY) testing and screening MUST be done before leaving the airport.

  53. How rich that the governor is able to point fingers while forcing me and tens of thousands of public school teachers into petri dishes where our lives and the lives of our family members are at risk. By keeping schools open, Cuomo has abdicated responsibility for pandemic mitigation and will be responsible for countless deaths.

  54. @CP: Cuomo is advising the president there should be policies and criteria for school closures put in place on the federal level. School closures force at least one parent (or the only parent in case of one-parent families) to stay home and forfeit their wages in many cases and risk job loss with all consequences of that "decision". And what if that parent is a teacher him/herself, or a critical care provider? Higher education and high school can go on-line (and higher education is doing that now) but for primary education and pre-school it's not so easy.

  55. @Anna Not easy? LA and Illinois did it. It's doable. It will happen here and then people will wonder why it took so long. Then we can watch Cuomo and DeBlasio backpedal and apologize and the LEft blame Trump for local decisions

  56. @Norville T. Johnston: Yes, it's doable, and if that's what it takes to stop the virus from spreading further, it must be done. But it's still not easy, because it requires at least one parent, in NYC often the only parent, to stay at home with their young children.

  57. Thank you Governor Cuomo. It is reassuring to see someone speak with sense and lay out a plan that addresses the scale of the problem. Competent leadership has been missing.

  58. Great idea but flawed. Military corps has been cut over decades along with the shut down of facilities. They cannot even take care of their own charges of responsibility. They outsource almost all of their personnel to the civilian community. This has been many years of BRAC commissions. As with defense peace through strength. So should we be thinking of the future medical facilities. Ones that can be opened should be. Staffing will still be an issue. Remember also the military personnel that themselves can be infected and spread.

  59. There are enough of them to make some hospital beds. C'mon.

  60. Gov Cuomo, it is a very well thought out and sensible suggestion. Thank you for your leadership. I really hope that POTUS accepts your idea. So sad that a part of me already thinks it’s unlikely...

  61. Thank you, Governor Cuomo, for your wisdom, leadership, your pragmatic approach to this catastrophe, and for your intelligence and compassion. If you were president, we would be in MUCH better shape than we are today. The military absolutely needs to get involved posthaste. But it’s apparently more important to build a wall and establish a Space Force. This is unprecedented, but having you at the helm is a great source of comfort. You are a godsend when we need it most. Thank you again, and best of luck and good health to you and to yours.

  62. @H. Clark Are you serious? President Cuomo? This clown is a fear spreading fool! His fascist beliefs come out immediately...use the military to control the population or millions will die. He's ruined this once great state and is driving the productive part of the population to leave the state.

  63. Close everything, nationwide, for 2 weeks. None of us know where we are and businesses like restaurants are helpless. Do they keep on now unnecessary staff and make up tipped wages to minimum, or lay everyone off and know their staff won’t be able to make rent and car payments? We need firm guidance and a financial package for all such businesses.

  64. Thank you governor, some very sound advice for the president here. One consideration re schools: while there should be federal guidelines about closures, we're obviously not there yet. So for now it is up to localities to make the call at the right time. We're past that time frankly. You must override NYC's mayor and close public schools. Today. Now.

  65. Governor, YOU need to act NOW. We are counting on YOU to take measures NOW. Close ALL schools. Close ALL non-essential commerce. Limit access to grocery stores and pharmacies. Quebec closed all schools days ago when they had NINE confirmed cases. Do you know something their premier does not know? Bars and restaurants in my neighborhood were busy as ever last night. People are not making rational decisions for the greater good right now, and we are looking to YOU to act to literally save our lives. Please ACT NOW.

  66. @Aaron Chase Aaron, how long are businesses supposed to close for, exactly? Does it make sense to destroy the entire economy over a virus that won't kill most people?

  67. @Aaron Chase After all commerce is closed , don't complain about all the homeless people. I don't know about you but my rent is still due in April.

  68. @Frank Frank, you (and governor Cuomo and mayor De Blasio) need to think more long term. Non-essential commerce needs to end for as long as it takes to flatten the curve. Doing that will save lives. Live people spend money in the community and pay taxes. Dead people, not so much.

  69. Mr. Trump, if you do what Mr. Cuomo suggested it will be good for your reelection.

  70. Thank you, Gov. Cuomo for this letter and for the actions you've taken to mitigate the effects of Covid-19. It's heartening to know that there are leaders like yourself and Gov. Inslee who are acting responsibly and sensibly. Hopefully, the federal government takes your advice seriously and acts immediately. Unfortunately, the time and opportunity they lost to downplaying this for two months can't be regained, but they can--and must--do everything in their power now to slow/stop the virus' spread and provide the health care that will be required.

  71. Meanwhile, this paper reports the bars are packed. Shut the bars. Emergency rules for restaurants on seating. Distribution of infrared thermometers at main food markets, quarantining of some items. Many state-level undone and obvious things. In the Don’s tiny, vindictive mind, anything that really hurts both coasts is a good thing. And yes, the National Guard and the military are the only task forces we have to expand medical bed capacity and temporary trained staffing. Anything at all done yet?

  72. I have consulted with the NYS DOH and NYC DOHMH on preparedness issues since the post 9/11 anthrax attacks. Both agencies have been repeatedly tried to build capacity under every administration in Albany and NYC. Time and again, the politicians delayed building new facilities in both Albany and NYC even though we knew this day was coming. The reason why New York is facing a testing crisis without proper capacity is because it failed to act when it had the chance. While the plans are in place in both NYC and Albany to build new facilities, both projects are mired in red tape, politics and inaction. To his credit, Gov. Cuomo was the first administration we worked with that embraced the need, only to run into the undercurrent of corruption that is Albany. Once we are past this, the state needs to build these facilities without delay.

  73. As a former staffer in a previous Cuomo administration, I can attest to the Governor’s tenacity and fortitude during times like these. We must work together, look past the ups and downs of the stock market, and approach our next steps with a laser-like focus. What we are experiencing is incredibly serious, unprecedented, and soon to be very dangerous. To the Governor’s third point, mobilizing the power of the federal government now to rapidly increase the capacity of our healthcare system will alleviate future burdens on our hospitals and could literally save thousands if not millions of lives. Governor, thank you for your leadership, past and present.

  74. @Cameron I think his leadership is mediocre. Schools should have been closed by now. Other restrictions should have been imposed by now.

  75. The president is objectively making things worse. Let's take a group of people we are concerned might have COVID-19, pack them shoulder to shoulder for 7 hours while asking them to share pens, and then send them back out into society. That is what he's done. On the science side, he could have put all his efforts into fielding as many test kits in as little time as possible and in funding vaccine research. On the behavioral side, most Americans would do what you need them to do if only you ask and tell them why you need them to do it. Yes, governments can close schools, etc. but really we all have to participate because we want to. When FDR encountered a banking crisis, he went on the radio for his first fireside chat. He literally went to the trouble to explain how banks work in simple terms anyone could understand. Then he explained why bank runs were so harmful and why he had implemented his bank holiday. Of course, he understood all those things. Our current incumbent doesn't know, and doesn't care, and is certainly not capable of bringing out the better angels of our nature. He brings out the worst in all of us.

  76. When this is all over, we will either have a massive health care crisis or the greatest case of hysteria in our nation’s history. I lean towards the latter. We are, thankfully, heading into spring and summer. There is a reason we call this time of the year “cold and flu season.” My feeling (and hope) is that this crisis will burn out with the warmer weather that is around the corner. If it does, we need to take a close look at how the political system, media, and medical establishment have hyped this up to such an extent that there is a run on toilet paper and other basic products, and caused the economy to go into free fall.

  77. If you believe that this all so much hysteria, I invite you to read the nightmarish accounts of doctors and nurses in Italian hospitals. We are in the midst of a public health crisis. If — as we all hope — the worst case does not come to pass here, it will be because of the combined (but not coordinated) efforts of state governments, businesses, and individuals. And blind luck. This will not mean that there was unfounded hysteria.

  78. @Jon S I hope your feelings and hope are correct. However, we do not know yet what this virus may do. We don’t know if it will diminish in the summer only to return with a vengeance in the fall. Ideally, all the measures people are taking now will result in the situation you hope for. But make no mistake, that situation will not just happen on it’s own. Every decision made about how to control the spread will play into what occurs. And of course if successful, we’ll have to listen to all the people who thought it was all hysteria say they were right and there was nothing to worry about all along....

  79. @Jon S I like you enthusiasm and I hope you are right! But will the virus survive in air conditioned environments over the summer? And will it come back in force in the fall, just like the flu does? We won't have a vaccine ready for another 12 to 18 months so I am not willing to bet on anything. I worry when I read this article: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/14/business/trump-administration-nursing-homes.html The epidemic started in a nursing home. I am not panicking, I just want to be informed by agencies and clear headed. We seem to be living in two realities, in one, pundits are paying lip service to our President, in the other the daily emergence of facts elicit the reaction of people who can look faster into the future than our administration. Criticism is constructive and learning to listen is smart. So yes, people panic in tightly packed places like New York. They might not do so as much in Houston if you guys are not living on top of each other. I understand your predicament. Please try understand ours?

  80. I have fears that adequate testing will only be available when it reaches the irony threshold, i.e. when all testing will reveal is that things are out of control. The old adage is proven, you get what you pay for. For years we’ve underinvested in many areas, watched the rich fail to pay their share, made things more efficient without factoring in resiliency, and thought our good luck will last forever. The bill is now due, delivered by the grim reaper, and he only accepts one form of payment. I hope the vast majority that survives learns from our mistakes. Our greatest mistake being thinking that we weren’t all in this together.

  81. @spughie "I have fears that adequate testing will only be available when it reaches the irony threshold, i.e. when all testing will reveal is that things are out of control." Good point! Maybe that's the administration's strategy - delay testing long enough that it will be moot - the extent of the devastation will be obvious.

  82. @spughie Yup.. you have to pay to play... apparently social democracy and socialized medicine are not a bad thing.. For example...yesterday I heard Ohio had done 35 tests while Ontario Canada had done 5,000 to 10,000 Covid tests and found about 2% infection rate... A US/Canada lock down is a very real possibility and very soon I suspect. Meanwhile Trump shakes hands and lies on TV. Who elected this guy?

  83. I’d like to see billionaires like Bloomberg, Bezos, Gates and others step forward and free up funds to pay for healthcare for those not already covered by insurance.

  84. @Martha Goff Maybe Bloomberg can free up some of the funds he was planning to use to make sure a candidate running on Medicare-for-All wouldn't get elected...

  85. @Martha Goff We are a capitalist country. That is the problem. You cannot expect the wealthy to pay for our problems. You should be able to count on government. That is why people form governments, to do what individuals cannot. We need a strong socialist system. Not have to go begging at Bill Gates's homes.

  86. @Martha Goff Perhaps like the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health ? Or perhaps the other 1.8 BILLION he gave to Johns Hopkins recently ? Maybe other billionaires such as Trump should do the same. Or maybe just let the government pass a decent healthcare bill so people won't need charity to get healthcare.

  87. I have come to expect only muddling incoherence as a response to this crisis, so it was comforting to read a clear strategy from the Governor. Alas, I continue to have little faith in the federal government. Why wouldn’t I expect Mitch McConnell will play partisan games with the relief legislation, like he does with everything else? Meanwhile, the occupant of the White House is busy seeming busy, with his ball cap on and his phalanx of experts who know things but can do nothing under his leadership. And Mike Pence’s directive seems to be, “whatever you do, whatever happens, make the President look good.”

  88. Time is of the essence. We're less than a week away from near-certain catastrophe and still our leaders drag their feet. Already an economic disaster, this will soon be about life and death.

  89. This sounds good but, sorry, the governor is guilty of as much inconsistency as others. Until recently he advocated closing SUNY schools to lecture classes but keeping laboratory classes open. That suggestion is totally useless and didn’t change one-to-one interactions at all. There’s no logic that 250 people can’t meet but if the same 250 people meet in groups of 125 they become magically progtected. And of course faculty is not protected at all because they would meet all 250. The NYC decision by deBlasio to keep the public schools open is criminal. It’s good politics because schools often serve as daycare centers but it’s bad medicine.

  90. @Danson West "It’s good politics because schools often serve as daycare centers but it’s bad medicine." OK, that's a true long-term problem. However, this very contagious virus requires quick action because it spreads exponentially. There's no time to fix the daycare system; it's more important to keep people separated. And about your comment about lab courses: Individual SUNY schools are implementing the gov's policy according to their own best thinking, following CDC recommendations. First of all, labs don't meet with 125 students in them; most labs have 10-25 students. Second of all, students can spread out by 6' in lab spaces. Thirs of all, the two SUNY colleges near me have actually cancelled their labs because they've already sent their sudents home; I imagine others will too. In a time of crisis, there's going to be "inconsistency." But don't go around complaining about little problems, when the gov is working hard to protect millions of people all at once. Your complaining isn't helpful. Gov Cuomo has been much more proactive and constsent than Trump's federal response.

  91. @Paul-A. Please do let us know where you teach labs. In my labs no student will be able to spread out 6 ft apart. And the virus can remain infective for days on a surface. Lab equipment is being handled continually. Any one infected student or faculty member can infect others. To my knowledge the CDC made no differentiation between lecture and lab classes.

  92. @Danson West The situation is incredibly complex. Shutting NYC public schools deprives literally hundreds of thousands of food-challenged kids their only decent meals of the day. A recent report suggested that 1 of 10 NYC school kids live in shelters or are homeless. (My niece, who teaches in alphabet city in lower Manhattan can attest to this.) So you have to consider all these knock-on effects. Plus, as the mayor (who I generally despise) and the governor have pointed out, the city's care-givers, health-care workers, etc., would be effectively prevented from going to work if they have young kids to take care of at home. The idea of total NYC shutdown is one of panic, not thoughtful analysis.

  93. If Trump is betting on the free market to resolve the COVID-19 scare, he has to be reminded in the long run, we're all dead. The market can stay irrational longer than most people can stay solvent. Someone needs to sneak in a copy of Steven Covey's book "Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People" into the White House. Here are the key insights 1- Be proactive. ... 2- Begin with an end in mind. ... 3- Put first things first. ... 4- Think win-win. ... 5- Seek first to understand, then to be understood. ... 6- Synergize 7- Sharpen the saw. Don't work yourself to death. ... Economists believe the line is between free-enterprise & planning, and that the logical extremes are not possible. Donald Trump's inability to be forthcoming and transparent isn’t a coincidence. One has to be selfless and egoless to give perfect guidance as to where to draw the line since it exposes your preferences and biases. On occasions lines are drawn, because of self interest (gains/loss) individuals would probably draw lines in different places. But as soon as you admit that the extreme is not possible, and that a line has to be drawn, you are, on your own argument, done for since you are trying to persuade us that as soon as one moves an inch in the planned direction you are necessarily launched on the slippery path which will lead you in due course towards an economic paradox. This pandemic has exposed this Donald Trump because he found it easier to destroy than to build, to criticize than to create.

  94. @José Franco - Succinctly stated and extremely poignant. Thanks for adding depth to the conversation. Peace

  95. @José Franco Reminds me. The German paper Die Welt is reporting that Trump personally addressed the head of a German research firm working on developing a vaccine against COVID-19 and offered the firm "large sums of money" if they would a) turn over their research to the US and b) give the US exclusive rights to its development, use and--obviously--sale. The discussion purportedly happened at a meeting attended by CEOs of American Big Pharma. Ah, Capitalism...

  96. @WOID Envision a gathering convened by two people who disagree politically but are willing to mutually acknowledge that the other side may see some real threats more clearly than does one's own side. Where do you draw the line? I’ve imagined a world where we accept the idea “becoming” has no goal & that underneath all “becoming” there is no grand unity in which the individual could immerse himself completely as in an element of supreme value, we can choose another path: instead of judging ourselves & others for things we did or didn't do in the past, we all can instead invent a world beyond it, a true world. We can easily begin to remove self imposed obstacles once we recognize life is what you do with what’s been done to you. What individuals can become through proactive living and the habits we each choose to have are & become our true reality. Most important since the best way to affect any group is by individuals modeling desired behavior. Noble sentiments about capitalism while ignoring it's uncomfortable truths, at times create the biggest pitfalls and challenges to a more productive existence. If things are to continually improve, we must take a multi-disciplinary approach to how we think. Sharing abstract beliefs is only possible if we believe in the rule of law promoting individual liberty. The greatest danger is having good laws administered badly. Our goal shouldn't be perfection, we should strive to do the greatest good through the most pardonable inconveniences.

  97. Excellent strategy. Unfortunately since you thought of it first and recommended it to Trump in writing before his advisors did, he probably won’t do it. But even if you didn’t think of this before him, he still wouldn’t do it. In his mind if the stock market remains steady, the country is not in any crisis. Any move to protect American lives as you are urging him to take would be bad for Wall Street. This is his priority. Had he not had a market crash last week he would not have made any moves at all. He’s not panicking over a virus outbreak. He is panicking over the stock market. He doesn’t understand or refuses to acknowledge that a volatile stock market has no correlation to our actual economy. He claims to be a businessman yet he has little clue as to how stocks are priced or how economics actually works. Nor does he understand the long term negative effect to our economy if he doesn’t do what you are asking him to do right now. Most people who support him don’t understand the complexity either. They think because he has money that he made through real estate ventures, that he can actually troubleshoot and mitigate global health or economic threats to our country. Please keep sending your ideas. He will ignore them but we won’t. We can learn from your experience. Thank you.

  98. @Fred I agree that the only thing that interests this Administration is The Market - however - do not kid yourself. The market will be volatile until the virus is better understood, testing is available to all who need it (ie, is it a cold or is it the flu or is it Covid-19) and until the Experts are allowed to speak and we, as a people, believe what they say.

  99. I think we need to slow down and think all of this through. It seems that most Americans are going to be Ok. The Elderly and fragile folks need the full focus. Right now self interest, food hoarding, price gouging and hysteria have overwhelming taken control. All of this overreaction is causing tremendous economic impact on the folks who can least afford it. And of course The House passed a bill the protects the Big Corporations from paying hourly workers for lost time.

  100. @TobyFinn Hoarding should be a crime but in an unregulated capitalist state hoarding is seen as entrepreneurship. The House needs to a pass a a new bill to cover workers laid off from Big Corporations. Having the military set up extra hospital beds in case they are needed is not an over reaction but rather called planning. There are plenty of military people in this country who are employed so we are ready should a conflict break out..why not make use of them?

  101. @TobyFinn Um, when a virus has a latency period when it can spread exponentially before someone knows they're carrying it, it's NOT the time to "slow down and think all of this through." Every day wasted means that approximately 10x more people become infected. Plus, from his comments, it's clear that Gov Cuomo (along with other governors) has indeed "thought things through." Every one of his recommendations makes sense. This is not "overreaction." This is how a proactive government springs into action when its citizens need help.

  102. @TobyFinn We are experiencing severe UNDER-reaction. Mitigation should be a critical priority at the moment. We should be on lockdown. Think I'm engaging in hyperbole? Just wait a week or two. BTW, when the House passes a bill, it is not yet law. Their are piles and piles of potential laws and bills sitting on Mitch McConnell's desk. And 40 Republicans in the House actually voted against the House Bill. I'll believe something good has happened when the check is in my hands.

  103. How many hospital beds and ventilators could we have bought for the price of a mile of border wall? I'm 76. When the triage doctor decides that my COVID-19 should go untreated, my survivors can take comfort in having been protected against some immigrants.

  104. @Randalf : even if you are untreated, and age 76...you have a 90% chance of recovering from the coronavirus.

  105. @Concerned Citizen With severe organ damage.

  106. @Concerned Citizen That survival rate was true for China up to mid-February, according to the data I can find. It's not clear that it included people who went untreated, and it's unlikely that it would be applicable in Maryland at the pandemic's peak. I assume my prognosis would be better with treatment than without, which is my point.

  107. Yes to all of the above, plus: enlist heavy industry to ramp up the production of ventilators and other essential equipment. Enlist the people to form local task forces to safely distribute food and supplies to their shut-in neighbors. Establish rations of dwindling essentials. If all of this sounds like our response to WW IO, it should.

  108. Thank you, Governor Cuomo, for this thoughtful and coherent plea. Let's hope it is heard and acted upon. Now.

  109. Using troops to increase hospital space is not necessarily the fastest way. Existing construction projects can provide workers that are trained. Pre-fab hospital construction - as in China - can quickly provide space using public spaces for the construction. This might be Central Park in NY or Boston Common, for example. But it has to start now.

  110. It is time to end health and safety by chance. People’s continued existence should not be based on who’s your employer (if you have one), the city/state you live in, what type of healthcare plan you can afford, or which party is in power. The federal government needs to take forceful charge of the response to the threat of pandemic and the future of healthcare. The main purpose of the federal government is to protect the nation’s security. It is great to have the biggest most powerful military, but what good is it if the nation’s health and economy can be crippled by a virus. The lack of clear, powerful national leadership is giving the virus a chance to spread. Institutions and states are being forced to act on their own to protect citizens. I am in Spain where the national government has acted decisively to protect the population. I can’t leave my house, almost everything is closed and the military is enforcing the quarantine while helping with the stricken. When is the US going to grow up and start adulting.

  111. The proported zero cases of Coronavirus in West Virginia is very illustrative of the patchwork approach mentioned. Of course West Virginia has cases of Coronavirus; authorities just have not tested and identified those people yet. In these types of circumstances, we are only as strong as our weakest links.

  112. @Casual Observer You can't test people who don't present themselves with symptoms.

  113. The USACE-C has competitive contracting guidelines that would slow the building of medical facilities. Only an IDIQ,(Indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contracts) used extensively in wartime TO, (Theater of Operations) would speed up the awarding of contracts to construct hospital facilities. If you are talking about using active duty COE, for pop facilities, that is a different animal.

  114. Governor Cuomo, My advice is to forget about getting FDA approval and go ahead and take whatever steps are necessary to fast track testing. God forbid that this would get held up due to red tape. I think the citizens of New York would approve.

  115. We already localized testing. The patient is eventually confirmed by the CDC in accordance with law. However, the assumption is the local tests are good enough. We treat a positive as a positive even without a confirmed test. If the federal government is inept, why wait for the federal seal of approval? Just act. Gov. Cuomo's point about interstate travel and commerce is much more salient. Trump absolutely seeks to blame and penalize states which don't support him politically. We've seen this before and we're seeing it play out in real time now. The President is vindictive to a fault. There needs to be a national ban on non-essential domestic travel with clear instructions for people caught on the road. What's to stop someone from traveling from an infected resort in Florida to, say, Washington DC? The President is currently the world's worst role model. I agree with the military recommendation as well. We can send troops to the border to prevent a non-life-threatening group of refugees from entering the country but we can't setup extra healthcare facilities for a life threatening virus? Why do we even have a military? The US Army is trained in handling infectious disease. Lookup why Walter Reed is called Walter Reed. Meanwhile we have a President who won't admit to being tested until he's confirmed the results are negative. I truly hope the virus comes for him. The ineptitude isn't just appalling, it's dangerous.

  116. When I was in surgical training 20 years ago I rotated through the Minneapolis VA Hospital. It is an impressive, large facility with excellent staff which was consistently operating a half capacity. I wondered why the VA maintained so many facilities which could not be filled by its patients. Eventually I was told that the VA was partially built to be a surge capacity care system in the event of mass casualties from a future conflict. Looks like we have one now.

  117. @Victor Plenty of big offices to twittle thumbs and contemplate government retirement though..

  118. @Victor Good reminder that the VA hospitals could be made available to all in this emergency....

  119. Despite the recent downturn, the United States has the world’s strongest economy. This is a significant benefit in fighting the virus. Take advantage of this strength and lock down the country for two weeks. Do it. Now.

  120. @Dave Thomas As it sits right now anyone in Seattle or any other hot spot can jump in their care to drive anywhere in the nation with absolutely no interference, no testing, no temperature taken, nothing. Just gas up the car and go.

  121. Perhaps more than any other public figure, Governor Cuomo is providing real leadership during this crisis. He is clear, cogent, frank, and completely credible. Sadly, the President has none of these qualities. It is time for the states to officially take over the management of the corona virus, with financial and other support from the federal government as needed. The federal government needs to get out of the way.

  122. @Mark Siegel Too bad Prince Andrew didn't feel this way two weeks ago. In early March, when the first CV confirmed case was announced in NYC, he and Mayor Big Bird held a joint news conference at which the princeling insisted that while the CV is concerning, it's not as grave as other illnesses such ebola or the flu. "Avian flu, ebola, SARS, MERS, measles, right? So we have gone through this before. When you look at the reality here, about 80%of people who are infected with the coronavirus self-resolve . . . 20 percent get ill. The mortality rate estimated to be about 1.4 percent -- what does that mean? The normal flu mortality rate is about 0.6 percent." Queens Courier, Volume 33, Number 10 Week of March 5 - 11 The mayor supported Cuomo's stance, and said that the CV leaves healthy NYers with nothing to fear. As the worm turns. Two weeks is a lifetime.

  123. One of the problems is the shortage of doctors. Many Americans have attended medical schools in Hispanic America, that have good medical schools that meet american standards. HA can provide thousand of doctors,that after a brief training can work effectively with american doctors. I hope that the Trump administration overcome their narrow nationalism and adopt this proposal for the good of the nation.

  124. Everything in this article is needed! Since the beginning of March the confirmed number of infections has been increasing at an average of almost 40% per day. And we are on track to have over a million confirmed cases by mid-April. Just follow this article and shut the country down just like Italy. We have hours and days to act, no time to waste.

  125. The military is expert at logistics. They have to be or they will lose the battle. They could indeed build hospitals in days as the Chinese did. In particular the Army's Corps of Engineers and the Navy's SeaBees could be tasked with helping out. The Corps even has existing jurisdiction in the U.S., avoiding the problem of posse comitatus that other units have.

  126. A good list of recommendations but I am concerned with some of the ideas for expanding and localizing testing. How are local and private tests trialed and approved without the FDA or CDC oversight? And where is there a centralized database of testing and results which seems to be missing from current proposals? There needs to be a more cohort nationwide plan for testing and reporting results.

  127. What Gov. Cuomo, or any reasonably informed person needs to understand, is that this president will not take, much less comprehend, advice from any expert particularly if they happen to be a Democrat. In fact, he has surrounded himself by many people whose main function appears to be agreeing with him no matter what harebrained idea comes into his head. Every day this president is in office, mismanaging our country, is a day that will likely translate into an increased death rate for citizens of the United States. There are, with few exceptions, no medical experts in his administration unless they are Republican medical/political experts. Gov. Cuomo is an experienced and knowledgeable public servant. Why is he wasting his time with on Trump, who is, after all, forty dollar haircut on a ten cent head?

  128. @interested party: That ain't no "forty dollar haircut."

  129. I would like to add to the list a federally enforced crackdown on the hoarding and price gauging of needed supplies. Unfortunately there are those among us who look at this crisis as an opportunity to profit. As the article in the Times yesterday pointed out, people raced around buying up all available supplies with the express intent of getting rich quick. How is this ever so predictable behavior of humans to loot or scam each other during times of crisis always addressed well after the fact instead of before?

  130. This Republican agrees with this Democratic Governor. At least for the most part. Given differences in circumstances some degree of variation in local policies is needed, and I don’t feel comfortable transferring the draconian near dictatorial powers that states have in epidemics to the federal government, but the problem with people crossing state lines to defeat epidemic mitigation measures requires some federal action. I agree 100% with his statements on testing. The feds should simply waive enforcement of the 1988 law that gave control to the FDA for this situation. It is a proper emergency authority and should have happened 6 weeks ago. I fact I feel that the federal failure to declare non enforcement was a justification for the states to go ahead and act as needed anyway. I pretty sure no one was going to dare pursue enforcement. I don’t see the Corp of Engineers as the proper way to create bed capacity. As a Louisianan I have long lived in the shadow of the Corp and that is just not how they work. I also saw what State and Local governments could accomplish in emergency situations in consortiums with medical societies to create medical facilities out of other unused public spaces in Houston and Baton Rouge after Katrina. It is not so much a space problem as a personal problem, an equipment problem, and an authority problem. The emergency authority to eliminate the regulatory barriers must come from the state.

  131. 1. Build military field hospitals immediately. They could be quickly set up in the fields of Central Park, or any city parks. 2. Alternatively, out of service cruise ships could be brought into NY ports, and ports around the country and used as hospitals.

  132. I doubt DT will want to free up the military for anything other than the "national emergency - two big words" at the border. Watching Dr. Fauci this morning with Chris Wallace - he blew up Trump's continued whining that the "previous administration" had regulations that prevented them from acting faster. First of all - Trump has not let any law, regulation, amendment, rule - stand in his way. All of a sudden, with a pandemic on our doorstep, he's hamstrung? Only his base will believe him, which is why he made that blatant lie on national t.v. to his base. And then tried to dismiss Alcindor's legitimate question about the lack of experts that his administration- him- got rid of. Frankly, my hat goes off to Cuomo and every other governor who have had to step in and take control. Sadly, the base still continues to believe Trump is in control. Good for you Governor Cuomo!

  133. Mobilize the Army now... a centralized force can move personnel to where they are needed, set up field hospitals, enhance the availability of doctors and protective equipment. Hurry before it is too late....

  134. The statesmanship shown by Governor Cuomo is a breath of fresh air. If Trump could place the well being of ALL Americans ahead of his re-election paranoia there may be renewed hope in this unprecedented health crisis. November may be too late. As warned the election of Trump would be the end of civilization as we know it. We are on the cusp.

  135. The massive jam ups at the airports because of additional screening is indicative of a well intentioned but poorly thought out action. Large numbers of people packed in together is a way to expose large numbers of people who are then traveling to various places. The decisions need to be made thoughtfully with an understanding of the consequences. The experts need to be utilized.

  136. @Javaforce I couldn't agree more! The Dallas DFW airport has such screening in place with a requirement to fill out a Federal questionnaire. People stood in line for over 4 hrs, missed connecting flights, then went on their way virus or not. Of course, packed in together while in line as they were, far more of them probably now have the virus than did before. We need well contemplated strategy, not knee-jerk reactions. We need presidential leadership, not cheap casino tactics.

  137. All of the governor’s suggestions are needed, and then some. We are being attacked by aliens, similar to “Independence Day”, the movie. This is a world war against an outsider. All budgetary, deficit and other normal time considerations should be abandoned. As it usually happens, after the war is won, economic activity returns with a vengeance. Then we will have time to take stock of what has happened and recalibrate our finances. To make this decisions we need world leaders. Regrettably, there are none to be found.....

  138. All of your suggestions address "after-the-fact" infection response, and will cost countless billions. For a very small fraction of that cost the U.S. Government could provide every single American with quality hand sanitizers (70% alcohol or better), which is the best way to keep from contracting the virus. Stores are sold out and suppliers are not stepping up production to meet demand. And also supply N95 face masks, the best way to keep from spreading the virus. Stop focusing on how to deal with the out of control spread of the virus, and focus instead on preventing it in the first place. For example: 1. Require mass transit passengers to wear face masks. 2. Require companies to step up production of hand sanitizers and face masks to meet demand. 3. Make it a Federal Offense to hoard essential products or price gouge.

  139. OK a face mask may work once, then must be discarded, so your proposal to step up production of a product made primarily in China would require construction of new factories or retooling of existing factories in this country. is that going to happen in a matter of days or weeks? Who will pay for it or do you propose that every American buy face masks rather than pay for food or pay rent? Hand sanitizer works somewhat less effectively than hand washing, which costs far less, and neither work if not practiced. Are you proposing a law requiring every American to sanitize his/her hands (how often?) with sanitizer purchased with rent money and how will you enforce that? The problem is hospital capacity for acutely ill patients, solved only by increasing capacity.

  140. FYI, according the people who KNOW something (unlike the ones who ”have a knack for it”) masks are very inefficient-even the N95 ones-because no one wears them correctly and then you take them off to eat. Hand sanitizer yes-and I do believe there is some legislation on price gauging-though hoarding would be good except impossible to prove. And would we go after the toilet paper people? All these things are good ideas-after the fact or before- they need discussion-BUT that would be doing something. And BTW it already is after the fact. It’s here and is here bigger than we know if we follow all the other countries trajectories. We need to attack both ends.

  141. @Meerkat Mac : hand sanitizer has no magical properties. Ordinary soap and hot water work better!!!! Hand sanitizer is a CONVENIENCE for when you are in the car, traveling or somewhere away from running water. People lived happily before hand sanitizer was invented! ask any boomer. That being said: there is plenty of hand sanitizer out there -- but people are HOARDING IT! hoarding is a huge problem and about to explode and get much, much worse. It will be pretty hard to get any kind of policy like "don't hoard" and enforce it -- on 330 million people in 50 states.: hand sanitizer has no magical properties. Ordinary soap and hot water work better!!!! Hand sanitizer is a CONVENIENCE for when you are in the car, traveling or somewhere away from running water. People lived happily before hand sanitizer was invented! ask any boomer. That being said: there is plenty of hand sanitizer out there -- but people are HOARDING IT! hoarding is a huge problem and about to explode and get much, much worse. It will be pretty hard to get any kind of policy like "don't hoard" and enforce it -- on 330 million people in 50 states.

  142. I was US Army. The American public does NOT want active duty units deployed within the United States. That’s what the National Guard is for. Regular Army units don’t train to aid domestically. The National Guard does. And does everyone remember Katrina? The National Guard isn’t even particularly good at taking care of Americans in crisis. The regular Army would be worse. The active US Army isn’t good at building things. It’s good at blowing things up. And I get it, the pandemic requires resources. But the US Army isn’t the resource that many people probably think it is. It would be a LOT better to simply activate the National Guard in all 50 states and utilize federal funds to keep them spun up. Deploy federal dollars to hospitals and nursing homes so they can keep their operations fully staffed and keep their supply closets fully stocked. And the best way to create a containment of the virus? Stop Fox News from broadcasting people who keep saying the virus is no big deal. Deploying the regular Army into American cities is not a recipe for success.

  143. @Austin Ouellette These are not normal times. One of the first times I was in Europe I had run into a particular problem and brought it to the attention of my European boss. He looked at me and said, "You are an American. BE CREATIVE!!" He was right. The same is true here. While I am sure you speak the truth from your experience, we need to expand our horizons, roll up our sleeves, and get the job done. All will need to pitch in. This is exactly what happened in WWII. As an expat, I would say that is the greatest strength of Americans. Like Mike Ditka once said, "Whatever it takes".

  144. @Austin Ouellette Cuomo was specifically referring to the Army Corp of Engineers (as opposed to the standing US Army) which consistently works on projects in the territorial US.

  145. @Austin Ouellette I would like to point out that the US military imposed their generals and other personnel to govern western Germany and Japan at the end of WWII. They did an acceptable job in that capacity (I think MacArthur was a terrible person). The military should never be deployed against the citizens of this country. But, to deploy them and their resources seems reasonable in this crisis. I generally trust their training.

  146. Trump is increasingly demonstrating his intellectual myopia and his egomaniacal limitations as a leader. One can only hope, and yes, pray, that someone whom he trusts can take the text of Andrew Cuomo's suggestions and transmit it into some form that this president will accept and immediately implement.

  147. You wrote a letter to someone who doesn’t read, and gave advice to someone who doesn’t heed advice. Good ideas and a nice try, though.

  148. Cuomo running for President would turn Texas blue. I want him in 2020.

  149. @Victor Reyes You can have him. But, sorry, he won't be available until 2024 at the earliest, unless he has outlived his shelf life by then. In the mean time, though, you can move here and enjoy him in real time (I hesitate to say in real life). After a while, you'll make a beeline back to Texas, and rue your wish.

  150. Cuomo, just find the guts to make your own decisions. There is nothing more pathetic at this point than for state officials, scientists, newspapers, priests/rabbis/, or citizens to making cringing appeals to Trump. Just closes the schools, bars, and other nonessential places of congregation already and start ramping up NY's system of healthcare rather than waiting helplessly on the sidelines worrying about the political consequences of any action.

  151. An excellent letter and collection of straightforward and meaningful suggestions. We have the additional tools available to help better deal with this crisis; let' use them! The President has rightly declared this pandemic a national emergency. Let's throw everything we have that can make a difference to slowing and stopping spread of the virus. PDH

  152. The Navy has 2 hospital ships & the capability to build 500 bed hospitals packed in CONEX boxes. FEMA has emergency trailers around the country. It's time to use those.

  153. How long would it take the Corps of Engineers to put up let’s say ten 1000 bed MASH style hospitals around the country where COVID-19 is most severe?

  154. @Oxfdblue probably about 4 - 6 hours but that's too sensible

  155. So we need to mobilize the military, but it’s ok to let kids go to school, when even under normal circumstances, is a bastion of germs and bacteria? Quite the needle to thread, isn’t it? How many kids on any given day touch their face, wipe their nose or mouth, then touch their desks, doorknobs, handrails and God knows what else? Are teachers and staff wiping down every surface after every class? Hardly. So if it’s ok to allow millions of kids to go to school everyday, maybe mobilizing the military isn’t really necessary. And attacking the President for not doing so is just another reason to take advantage of hysteria and make him look bad. Never let a good crisis go to waste, right?

  156. But meanwhile Most schools in the greater NYC area and suburbs are closed except for the most densely populated school system being the NYC public schools! How insane is that?

  157. This is what leadership looks like.

  158. How rich that the individuals that were terrified of martial law under Trump are now asking for it.

  159. @Llamafeeder No one suggested martial law. Re-read the article to see what was actually proposed.

  160. All this was laid out after analysis of the Ebola crisis. But Trump got rid of the Pandemic Response Team, whose purpose was to monitor and coordinate on a national level, including with the military. Essentially, the exact thing Cuomo is asking for. The PRT was started by Obama, so of course he had to get rid of it. Trump's pride is all he cares about. It's all fun and games till we need a real leader.

  161. Most think of Turkey as a backward country. Today, they have 5 coronavirus cases and 100,000 beds ready when they need them for the virus. The WHO has heaped praise upon them for how prepared they are for what might happen. The US can't even do testing, let alone have a plan for when the infections inevitably arrive. So, who is the backward country?

  162. I honestly don’t like the idea of involving a military (their are some young adults living on their own at their apartments and you really don’t want any militant to be abusing/rapping them). The country should just stop running for a month! Close all businesses, schools... let us stay indoors in our homes and take a moment to breath and think. Those that are sick should be sent to a facility (if their people are honest to recognize the issue and let them go). But, the only way to avoid spreading this is to stay indoors. The street should be deserted! Test kits should be sent by helicopters when there will be enough to be distributed to everyone. I am seeing parents posted everywhere that they need a childcare provider (babysitter, nanny), which is very lame because they are home to avoid being exposed to this virus and yet, they want others to put their life at risk by going to work for them? Very selfish and inconsiderate! Some (parents from Urbansitter and Care) have even posted that they have been in contact with those that have been tested positive and still seeking caregivers. Nobody in their right mind should go there to work. However, some people are still desperate for $$$ that they will not care about their health. The world should just stop for a while and then, we will be able to see some improvements just like in China! Thank you!

  163. Finally! Where has the “best, most expensive” military been during all this?? There’s a base every five feet. The homeless should be able to quarantine there too.

  164. This is an admirably short and sensible list. It is likely to be tossed out of the window right away because it comes from the NY Governor. Republicans, as we all know, have the monopoly on good ideas. What is unfolding here is an avoidable tragedy of immense proportions. Countries with far less resources and scientific capability are dealing with Covid19 much better. But Trump sees everything, even the life and death of American citizens, through the prism of his re-election prospects. The pathetic group that surrounds him cannot speak truth to power - they would be fired if they did. So they genuflect every time they are in front of a TV camera and praise the Dear Leader to the high heavens.

  165. Thank you, Gov. Cuomo. It is going to take all of us to get this effort off the ground and it's pathetic that our president has to be begged for basic decency and intelligence. At this point, I'm with you - whatever it takes (although I'm certain Trump won't get any smarter)!

  166. "In short: Localize testing, federalize shutdowns and task the Army Corps of Engineers to expand hospital capacity." With any other president this would make good policy sense with a crisis of this magnitude. But the Trump administration is so polluted from top to bottom that ALL institutions that the president controls are politicized and have no credibility. A good example of this is Anthony Fauci. All over tv this morning he sounded like a corrupt propagandist for Trump and not the objective authority he's supposed to be. Any massive federal military response would undoubtedly be led by Trump propagandists with zero credibility. People may be better off with states and localities doing what needs to be done for protection rather than getting slammed with more massive Trump incompetence.

  167. So, Trump says his test his negative....how many lies has this man told us? It was all so pat, so quick, so unexpected (sure, I”ll test, I mean if the journalists want me too! even though three seconds ago I said no way!). I for one don’t believe anything he says, nothing, and would never ever shake that hand.

  168. Unfortunately the man in the Oval Office doesn't read anything longer than a couple of paragraphs, and it is highly doubtful that he'll accept the plan of Mr. Cuomo, a man he probably considers as being a deep stater. During one of the worst medical emergency since the Spanish Flue, this country is led by a man who considers not only science but truth as his personal Nemesis.

  169. Will Trump acknowledge the smartness of this and act on such ideas? Or will he rail at Cuomo on Twitter? We all know the answer.

  170. Will trump ignore this great idea because it came from Cuomo?

  171. What a clear thinking, rational problem solving, attack-the issues-approach he has outlined. This is what leadership in a crisis looks like. Rally the resources and build around a plan to combat the most pressing needs. It’s shameful our President and his cronies are clueless and we must rely on an adhoc uncoordinated response led by a whole host of players, governors, mayors, corporate execs, and the like to fill the embarrassing void from the top.

  172. Let’s not wait for Trump to become a caring ethical person Let’s get the WHO test now and start actually screening passengers at airports and stop telling people to stock up —it s creating persistent crazy crowded conditions at grocery stores and at least get hand sanitizers and disinfectant products to people in the highest risk groups We need some consistency & organization Not coming from anywhere including CDC But first and foremost let’s get those WHO tests so we can start testing en masse tomorrow

  173. Trump will continue to dismiss and ignore any and all science-based information, (or reality for that matter) and will just go with his gut, and remain the “only I can fix it” president. It appears this administration's top priority is still to stroke Trump's ego and nod on cue as he rambles on about the stock market. At least people like Governor Cuomo are beginning to create a paper trail (and putting it out to the public to see) with a clear set of priorities and action needed from the federal government. What action will be taken remains to be seen.

  174. America is testing at such a slow rate that it is essentially not testing for the coronavirus which prevents the reality and facts of the coronavirus from being known. It's incompetence, malpractice and irresponsibility at the highest levels of government run by a 'very stable genius'. Every other rich country is testing at a much higher rate. You cannot fight and solve a problem if you don't identify it first. America once again stands out as one of the slowest kids in the class that can't understand basic academics. Time for America's governors to take charge from the inept, incompetent and clueless Trump-Pence-Tax-Cut Administration.

  175. Since there are millions of people who may not be financially well to sustain the economic stresses our nation and the world will face in the next several months, eliminating the payroll taxes will ease the impact and provide people in lower income brackets more disposable income. So those people who are opposing this policy proposal are showing their true colors about helping people. Enough already about your disdain for President Trump since it serves no productive purpose at a time of crisis.

  176. @MDCooks8 All a cut in payroll taxes accomplishes is the undermining of Medicare and Social Security finances that tens of millions count on to survive. And all the 2017-Trump-GOP 0.1% Tax Cut accomplished was the undermining of the United States Treasury and the cutting of critical government services like the White House pandemic expert response team that Trump eliminated in 2018 so the rich could get richer. Tax cuts are NOT the solution to anything except in Republican fraudonomics textbooks. If you want to help poor and nonrich people, raise taxes, send them checks paid for by reversing the Trump-GOP's 0.1% Welfare Queen program. People supporting this reckless payroll-tax-cut policy proposal are showing their true economic and history ignorance about Republican public policy and its destructive effects on society. Buy an economics and history textbook.

  177. @Socrates Well Congress has the power to keep payments flowing to the recipients of Social Security and Medicare so let's see how they respond. But people working can use this money of a temporary federal income tax freeze. Now is not the time for politics.

  178. He does not want the true numbers of those infected getting out. Just like Trump was supposed tested for the coronavirus and it came up negative. Nobody believes he was tested or that if he was he his administrative doctor is telling the truth. Lie, Lies, Lies for almost 4 years. The, "Art of the Deal" is falling apart. "All hands prepare to abandon the ship". One thing is for sure, Trump and his cohorts & family will get the BEST MEDICAL TREATMENT there is in the USA. Thank God for Administrative socialized medicine.

  179. I actually believe he was tested. Just don’t believe what they said about the tests. If he got it, it would undermine all that he has been saying all along. This way, he looks invincible and becomes the super hero, god like being that his followers believe he is.

  180. @Michael : Trump is 73 -- if he has coronavirus, he is at high risk -- far more so than a younger person. Why would Trump WANT to have coronavirus? If he was really sick from it….wouldn't it be obvious? wouldn't he be coughing and weak and feverish? does he LOOK sick? Trump gets medical care as a Federal Employee, as do his dependents. I am sure his ADULT CHILDREN have private insurance coverage. They would not be covered under their father's health plan.

  181. ask Jared to ask his brother's wife's father what he thinks. Sarcasm aside. The testing fiasco is an inexplicable scandal. This is 100% the Trump administration caused problem. We have the machines, we have the skills. Just need the approvals (like 4 weeks ago).

  182. @A J : actually….we don't. And it doesn't matter WHO is President. We don't have the test kits. We don't have the man power. We don't have the hospital space. And no other nation does either -- no matter if they have Single Payer or socialist systems. No society can cope with a pandemic. It isn't possible.

  183. Time is short. We are at war against the coronavirus. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The time is now to all get on the same page. As the great prophet Jerry Springer said best, "take care of yourself, and each other."

  184. FYI: States have control over their respective National Guard units which chiefly are combat arms, not medical assets. Under the control of Governors. Medical assets are found in the Army Reserves, and are under the control of the President. The President can activate or federalize individual States National Guard units. They would have Combat Engineers assigned and could clear land, build roads, and berms for perimeter, but the U.S. Army Reserves medical units actually erect the combat support hospitals with assigned personnel - nurses, doctors, respiratory therapist, OR techs, LPN’s, and dentists. In my combat support hospital, the older dentists were the best forklift drivers. In the Navy, the engineers (SeaBees), actually erected the hospitals for the medics. But not in the Army where the medical personnel erect the hospital. However, the young strapping muscular straight-pants 18 year 91B infantrymen from the National Guard would always love being reassigned temporary duty by their a First Sergeants to go help out the First and Second Lieutenant Nurses build their hospital. Since they were Privates or PFC’s and the nurses were officers, there was always a lot of “yes ma’am”, “right away ma’am” dialogues happening. Get’er done they did! I agree with the Governor’s message to the a President in his letter here. And I agree that it’s high time to - get’er done!

  185. Sorry - that was too long for Trump to read. Let's hope that someone close to him passes him the very solid recommendations. Apparently America is not First... by any measure when it comes to Corona-19...

  186. Governor Cuomo’s suggestion would be a fine idea of the current occupant of the White House was different. Trump simply can’t be trusted to execute a policy involving our military. No matter what the stated purpose of the usage might be, Trump would pervert it for his own gain and lie about it later, and probably accuse a political enemy of whatever illicit behavior he committed.

  187. @Adam Trump will instruct them to also screen illegal immigrants thus making sure that people who should be screened just continue to infect the population. Already we have that problem since illegals will not come to a hospital. They will get sick and just hide out spreading the pandemic.

  188. Cases are ramping up in my New York hospital - I am seeing cases daily now - and we know the overwhelming surge is coming. The virus is everywhere. Americans are going to die because the administration is a mess and months behind. Whoever has any guts in this administration needs to persuade the President to work to save as many American lives as still possible, and to get the testing started TODAY, for everyone. If it has to be put to the President in terms of improved re-election odds, that’s fine. We need to take care of each other. Now is not the time to indulge the President’s pathologies.

  189. Don't count on it soon. The Army Corp. of Engineers was supposed to be dredging to replenish the beach at Fire Island, but Trump pulled them off that job to replenish the beach near his Mar-A-Lago resort.

  190. The governor makes very reasonable and needed suggestions on the medical and testing side of the situation. However, any domestic deployment of the military smacks of martial law and will only heighten citizens' anxiety and their mistrust of government.

  191. @Charles Understood. But the choice is becoming stark: worry about appearances or die. Sorry, but I'll take my chances with the Army Corps. It is, after all, staffed by our daughters and sons.

  192. @Leaf Schumann Careful as you give up your rights for security. I don;t see the need as of yet and the need will be localized to states. Let the governors decide.

  193. @Charles Only if you're on the crazy side of the fence already, Chuck. Normal people will not be afraid of military involvement, but Faux Noose views will freak out (even though many are veterans (which goes to show you how deep their crazy goes)).

  194. This is not just a state or national crisis. This is an international problem that must be coordinated primarily among world leaders and their communities. What we may do, therefore, is to begin by creating an exchange of resources between nations like the United States (just beginning to face the coronavirus pandemic) and nations like China, a country with a colossal workforce capable of assisting builders and medical personnel to improvise hospitals and bring in doctors and nurses to Europe, the United States, and places about to confront what seems to be an inevitable event.

  195. @Edgardo Diaz Diaz Credit where is credit is, Dude. The Chinese Government is providing masks and equipment at low or no cost to Italy, and support personnel as well.

  196. Critics writing here complain the Governor is requesting of the Federal Government actions he could take on his own, like closing schools and bars state wide. But without the cooperation of mayors and local governments, the Governor is merely moving air and not bodies. Hence the request for Federal intervention. But how much power would a President need to enforce such an edict? Do we really want to totally give up our Freedom of Assembly, and give it up to this President?

  197. Unfortunately, Trumps past caution to limit travel from Asia was criticized as an overreaction and unnecessary by many Democrats including Joe Biden. Schumer even promised to introduce a bill in the Senate to overturn Trump’s limits on travel. Maybe Trump was not cautious enough. But I don’t think that many Democrats would have supported even tougher measures to restrict the spread of the virus by travelers.

  198. @Rock Winchester The US was the 13th country to ban china traffic. This was good, but now exactly original.

  199. @Stewart did or did not Democrat’s criticize Trump for the ban?

  200. I guess that Schumer and Biden thought that all of the other countries were also overreacting and that Trump was also too cautious.

  201. Anybody thinking about what we'll do with COVID-20? Will the world economy shut down for two months each year? I don't see how this becomes the new normal.

  202. @RonRich The money economy you speak of needs to fail and be replaced by people doing the right thing BECAUSE it is the right thing to do.

  203. Hey Gov. You have a national guard and a state with tremendous talent a resources. Get to work instead of sending public letters to the Pres. During WWII, the people helped the gov get ready, now we ask the gov to help us. People need to stop relying so much on gov and help themselves. Gov is too big and slow to response effectively for most of our population. We are the greatest people on the planet where we come together. We will pass this storm. Believe in the American Spirit. I realize this current generation of young people were not taught and do not believe about our great spirit and what our county has and can accomplish when we come together. Rise up America, she needs all of us right now.

  204. Um the national government is the one who had to lead us when there is a pandemic. Y’all take this. “ help yourself” thing way too far. Fine, tax me less federally if you want me to deal with it myself. Rubbish, like for real? Let’s not turn to the president or D.C. for this? Wow.

  205. @Chris Exactly.

  206. As a native New Yorker, but independent voter, I've always thought highly of Governor Cuomo. He showed clear and decisive leadership during superstorm Sandy. The same now--only the military can execute the tasks that are desperately needed now. Trump acted a week late to declare a national emergency, and he'll act late again while more people suffer. We need to unleash federal entities in all phases, so that more time is allowed for scientists to understand more of this highly contagious-unlike HIV-virus in order to disable it. Thank you Governor Cuomo for putting our lives before politics.

  207. On this general topic, one must avoid listening to the ax grinders on the extreme left or right. While one should listen to the health experts, they are not perfect either. Two questions I have for them is since this new virus is similar to SARS or MERS or for that matter the seasonal flu why are we only taking extreme measures for this one and not the others? Also what steps do a majority of experts agree upon. They can be all over the place too.

  208. @Paul this one is highly contagious and people can infect before they have symptoms. At a Biogen conference in Boston, 90 of 175 attendees tested positive. 20% of positive cases require hospitalization and 5% of those require ICU for extended periods. Do the math to understand why this virus will swallow most of 2020. This will be a medical resource crisis.

  209. @Paul I had the same question. This article helped me understand. --- Top officials at the WHO this week have sought to differentiate the spreading novel coronavirus from influenza, with the underlying message that while seasonal flu cannot be stopped, countries still have the chance to limit cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the new virus. “This virus is not SARS, it’s not MERS, and it’s not influenza,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a briefing Tuesday, referencing other coronaviruses that have caused smaller outbreaks. “It is a unique virus with unique characteristics.” By making a distinction between the viruses, Tedros has sought to rally global action against the new microbe. He and other WHO officials urged governments confronting the coronavirus to implement the public health measures that have been shown to reduce viral spread, such as isolating infected people, following those who come in contact with cases to see whether they develop illness, and suspending activities that bring together lots of people. “We don’t even talk about containment for seasonal flu — it’s just not possible,” Tedros said. “But it is possible for Covid-19. We don’t do contact-tracing for seasonal flu — but countries should do it for Covid-19, because it will prevent infections and save lives. Containment is possible.” https://www.statnews.com/2020/03/03/who-coronavirus-different-than-influenza-can-be-contained/

  210. @LisaW What about MERS and SARS and other flu strains? I heard the same thing re them and we did not do nearly the same thing. Again, all I am saying is have the "pros" show the proof, educate the public and let them have their say.

  211. A close relative was a LTC in the Chemical Corps of the US Army. He has served our country for 35 years until 2019. His corp's specialty is mass decontamination of large areas and people in the event of a biological attack. The Chemical Corp has the knowledge, staff, equipment, etc to decontaminate large public areas quickly and efficiently. They also have great expertise in quarantine. For several weeks, we have been wondering when someone was going to mention this highly-trained branch of our Army. I think my relative tweeted the president about this. The use of the Chemical Corps has probably been suggested the Impeached Stable Genius by high-ranking Army and/or other armed forces officers. But since he thinks he knows more than anyone else, he ignored them and continues to believe that throwing money at the markets and corporations will send COVID-19 running for the hills. God save us. Please stay healthy and limit your interactions with others.

  212. Andrew, Entirely with you and encourage the President and his experts to be with you on making full use of labs. The most useful testing, and slowing the spread cannot occur if the tests are not processed. Also agree on Federal aid regarding closures, based on need. The third issue is difficult. As you state, we are severely under equipped in terms of hospitals, and available beds. Two issues are of concern: -The Army Corps Of Engineers may be able to mobilize bases and dorms into available beds, but this also requires qualified staffing; -Of greater concern is placing this degree of transformative military power in the hands of some one who has demonstrated significant autocratic tendencies, and a willingness to utilize the military to support projects aimed at increasing his political power. This seems too great a temptation for Trump—a temptation that would be enhanced by many of his most fervent supporters in Congress.

  213. I support Cuomo on this 100%. Also, I ask Governor Cuomo and Mayor De Blasio to plug another gaping hole in the "don't touch shared surfaces unless disinfected right before" rule: Credit card terminals in many stores, including pharmacies. Many still require a signature, either with an attached stylus or one's finger to complete a purchase. Also, some screens won't accept a gloved finger for input - period. So, please issue an emergency order that stores either waive the signature requirement, or make it mandatory to stores that won't to provide means to disinfect the stylus, touch screen and ones fingers before and after use. A stylus or screen used by a single carrier can potentially infect hundreds of subsequent users. It's hygiene 101.

  214. @Pete in Downtown Absolutely and let's repeal the no plastic bag rule. Reusing bags increases the possibility of viral spread as well

  215. Great suggestion!!!!

  216. @Pete in Downtown How about the high tech idea of supplying Lysol wipes for people who sign with styluses. Like grocery stores have supplied for years to wipe cart handles. OMG, what a concept. It's common sense 101. We don't need a NASA level solution here.

  217. Going to need more beds. If this country doesn't already have an emergency management plan, that takes over and makes use of hotels, motels, university dorms, etc., then we are toast.

  218. @Joe B Most of those plans are local or regional. My father was an administrator at a large hospital on the Gulf Coast. They would conduct drills, including triage, for mass casualty events in cooperation with the commander of a local military base. Usually with a hurricane in mind, but also terrorism or pandemic.

  219. Where have you been? It’s been stated over and over that Trump dismantled a plan set in place by the prior administration and never replaced it with anything. This administration was also denying the urgency and seriousness of this virus as recent as last week when trump told everyone it’ll go away.

  220. There does need to be a national response and it needs to start with citizens themselves. Just stay home. Period. It's that simple. We all need to self-isolate to slow down the spread. Going to bars, restaurants and out for brunch needs to stop.

  221. Very valid point & wise advice. I couldn’t agree more with everything you said.

  222. Here's my two cents...close the NYC public schools and reorganize them as food distribution and public health information sites. Figure out a way to distribute food to needy NY'ers who may not be able to purchase food for themselves. Use the schools as community resource sites. The infrastructure is there. Use the power(s) of the federal, state and city government to require local television stations to broadcast educational instruction during the hours of 8am to 3pm. Have each channel coordinate delivery...PBS for preK, CBS for elementary, NBC secondary, etc. The airwaves belong to the public, or that's what "they say". Let's see some serious committment by the TV stations to provide a quality educational experience for the 1 million displaced students of our great city. Leadership, organization, this thing can be beat back. My two cents...

  223. @jimmboy The only thing you left out is the premiere of your talk show on WPIX which I'm willing to watch. Unfortunately, you'll have a tough time getting sponsors since many viewers will be pulling back spending and be out of a job.

  224. Superbly written!! This is, in fact, the most logical & sensible suggestion that I’ve read thus far on this entire thread.

  225. It’s like we should have had a... plan for this already or something.

  226. Governor, here's something you and the state legislature can do to immediately slow the spread of the virus: enact a state law mandating at least 2 weeks paid sick leave for every employee in the state. Even if this is done on a temporary basis of 12 to 18 months, it would significantly slow spread of the disease. Many of us can work at home and practice social distancing to slow the epidemic. But sooner or later we will have to buy food and other supplies. All that isolation will do no good if I catch the disease from a store employee who could not afford to stay home despite being sick. I simply do not understand why New York state has not taken this simple but important step.

  227. It may boil down to using troops to monitor and move things along. Asking the feds may work, despite Trump's bumbling chaotic administration. Using the military will burnish Trump's image since he likes to brag about "his troops," so this strategy could work in Cuomo's favor.

  228. @Birdygirl And could work in Trump's favor.

  229. Not many US news outlets reporting that the German government is using national security laws to block Trump's secret acquisition of CureVac, a German company that's very advanced with Coronavirus vaccines. Under the terms of (now suspended) Trump deal, CureVac's technology would be for exclusively American use. This doesn't look good from any angle, frankly.

  230. It’s great all the real leaders keep speaking out and recommending solutions to this inept and incompetent administration they desperately need it and so does America. Pence and the task force implemented some of Biden’s proposals the next day, let Trump claim credit who cares. Everyone knows he’s sitting around tweeting and carrying on as normal, chaos rules the day.

  231. Trump probably felt slighted by some insignificant thing done by Mario Cuomo years ago, so forget about this.

  232. An effective executive must do two things to succeed. One, set goals and expectations. Two, find the best qualified people to accomplish that goal, and give them the people and resources they need. Trump fails on both. Anyone who supports this President in the next election has blood on their hands. This is no longer about taxes, deficits and foreign influence. It is about life/death of your fellow Americans. No one can look aside and ignore this President's total incompetence.

  233. @Riveral Those are THREE prerequisites for executive success: goals, people, and resources. There I fixed it.

  234. Governor, can't find a profit motivation in your memo to the president. Good ideas all but we live in the new feudalism. Profit first; people second.

  235. Governor Cuomo has shown himself to be a strong leader in this chaotic time. If only we had such a leader in the White House.

  236. Dear God, please don't. The last thing we want to do is give Trump an excuse to mobilize the military domestically. If there ever were a way to make a deadly pandemic worse, this is it. What a remarkably bad idea.