Cuomo Drops Sharply in Polls After Nursing Home Scandals
Shortly after the administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo was forced to admit and apologize for deliberately withholding the accurate and complete death toll of nursing home patients who died of COVID-19, a Marist Poll revealed that the governor’s approval rating in New York had plummeted.
Six out of ten of 51% of the registered voters in New York said that the Cuomo administration mishandled the state’s nursing homes during the pandemic, the poll reported.
To make room for more COVID patients, on March 25, the governor issued a directive that required nursing homes to accept residents who were discharged from hospitals even if they were still contagious with COVID-19.
The Empire Center for Public Policy, which successfully sued the governor and the Department of Health (DOH) in its request for accurate information on behalf of the thousands of families who lost loved ones to COVID-19 in state-regulated nursing homes., reported that Gov. Cuomo’s directive potentially increased the deaths of nursing home patients “by a few hundred to maybe more than a thousand.”
Although the Empire Center’s report determined the governor’s March directive was not the only or the primary cause of the significant death toll in nursing homes, the report’s findings contradicted claims the DOH has made repeatedly that the governor’s directive was a significant factor in causing increased nursing home deaths.
Since July, the DOH has blamed asymptomatic visitors and staff members for the rampant and deadly spread of COVID in nursing homes: a position that DOH Commissioner Howard Zucker continued to repeat unpersuasively on Friday.
While 60% disapproved of Gov. Cuomo, only 19% of those polled believed that what the governor did was illegal and constituted a crime.
In assessing the governor’s handling of the COVID pandemic in general, in July 2020 66% of those polled approved of him, while in the last week, that number dropped to 49%, said the Marist Poll, which has been operated since 1978 on the campus of Marist College in Poughkeepsie.
The poll also reported that while last summer, only 9% of New York Democrats said they disapproved of the governor, recently, that number jumped 28% of Democrats and 44% of New Yorkers who reported disapproval.
Only 36% of registered voters said they believe that Gov. Cuomo deserves to be reelected to a fourth term in 2022.
(Darren McGee- Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)
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