"We will get through this": Fear and panic are more dangerous than COVID-19, says Cuomo, so no NY lockdowns

"We will get through this": Fear and panic are more dangerous than COVID-19, says Cuomo, so no NY lockdowns

New York will not order people to be “imprisoned in their homes,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared this morning, because it won’t help — and might make things worse. “The fear and panic can get out of control more than the virus,” Cuomo tells Today‘s Savannah Guthrie this morning. Panic may already be a problem thanks to news reporting on the rapidly growing number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, but Cuomo tells Guthrie that’s a function of expanding test capacity, not real-time spread:

Yesterday, Cuomo sharply dismissed suggestions from Bill de Blasio that a lockdown might be required. This morning, Cuomo’s still dismissive of that idea. “You’re seeing confusion” as a result of fear and panic, Cuomo says. “Are we reducing density? Yes,” Cuomo says after Guthrie presses him on the issue. “Do we want people to stay home? Yes. Are we going to do quarantine, people imprisoned in their homes? No.

Later in the morning, Cuomo emphasized his opposition to a lockdown again:

Contrast that with Cuomo’s tone toward the White House. Once again, Cuomo offers praise for Donald Trump, this time briefly over Trump’s cooperation on getting the Army Corps of Engineers involved. “I think that’s the best news,” Cuomo remarks, telling Guthrie that “this is a war, and we have to treat it like a war.” The ACE’s role will be to expand hospital capacity as rapidly as possible, likely in conjunction with the state’s National Guard. It literally can’t be built fast enough, Cuomo warns. “The health care system is going to be overwhelmed,” he says. “The question now is to what extent and what consequence.”

Cuomo seems to have found his footing in this crisis, as has Trump. The last two days from both men have been impressive, not just on their own but in how they have reached out to the other. It’s that kind of leadership that can tamp down the fear and panic — leadership focused on the tasks more than speculation and analysis, and focused on the crisis rather than the partisan game-playing around it.

Cuomo later emphasized the same point in his presser later in the morning. “It is this much time,” he said, holding his fingers slightly apart. “We will get through this. … We’ve been through it before.” That’s a good message to hear from top leadership in a crisis.

Join the conversation as a VIP Member

Trending on HotAir Video