ALBANY — Gov. Cuomo on Sunday stepped up his attack on President Trump, blasting him as “un-American,” “King Trump”, the “great divider and chief of this nation” and someone whose moral compass points to “sexism, racism, bigotry and intolerance.”
“It’s un-American for this President to be spreading the division among us when it was his job to bring unity to all of us,” Cuomo said while speaking at a service at the First Baptist Church of Crown Heights in Brooklyn.
He compared Trump, a native New Yorker, to a neighborhood racist.
“Every neighborhood has it, the scared small man in the house with the high fence and the shiny mailbox, afraid of people who are different. Afraid of people who are a different religion, who speak a different language, who come from a different place,” Cuomo said. “The person is threatened by diversity and uses anger to hide the fear.”
Cuomo has been ripping Trump for months. But he and the President have engaged in an increasingly hostile back-and-forth since Cuomo last week created controversy by mocking Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan by saying that “”we’re not going to make America great again. It was never that great.”
Cuomo, who is seeking a third term and faces a Sept. 13 Democratic primary challenge from actress Cynthia Nixon, has since acknowledged his “inartful” comments but has kept up the central theme of his argument that Trump wants to take America back to a time of racial strife and lack of women’s rights.
“Trump’s America is one of division and intolerance,” the governor said Sunday.
He cited Trump’s push for a wall along the southern U.S. border and his recently abandoned policy of separating children from their parents who were coming into the country illegally.
He accused Trump of giving cover to white supremacists and KKK members in the wake of last year’s Charlottesville, Va., hate rally and of being in the pocket of the NRA by opposing additional gun control measures to address the wave of mass shooting in the country.
“That is is not who we are,” Cuomo said. “It’s not our character. It’s not our soul.”
He again vowed that New York would lead the resistance against Trump and his policies, citing his successful push during his two terms to enact the tough SAFE Act gun control law, raise the state hourly minimum wage to $15, create a paid family leave program, and establish a free tuition plan for some public college students.
“I think New York is not discordant with America,” Cuomo said. “I think this President is discordant with America.”
“Mr. Trump, I’ve known you for 30 years,” Cuomo added. “You may be a slick salesman who fooled many people of this country but you didn’t fool me and you didn’t fool New Yorkers. We know who you are and we’re going to rise up and tell this nation the truth about who you are.”
In a series of tweets last week Trump wrote: “Wow! Big pushback on Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York for his really dumb statement about America’s lack of greatness. I have already MADE America Great Again, just look at the markets, jobs, military- setting records, and we will do even better. Andrew ‘choked’ badly, mistake!”
“When a politician admits that ‘We’re not going to make America great again,’ there doesn’t seem to be much reason to ever vote for him. This could be a career threatening statement by Andrew Cuomo, with many wanting him to resign — he will get higher ratings than his brother Chris!”
Chris Cuomo is a CNN anchor.
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