Last modified on Thu 23 Apr 2020 18.00 BST
Andrew Cuomo to Trevor Noah on Trump: ‘Who cares about how I feel about him personally? My feelings are irrelevant, my emotions are irrelevant. Just do the job.’
Trevor Noah called up New York’s governor, Andrew Cuomo for Wednesday’s Daily Social Distancing Show as the heart of America’s coronavirus outbreak, New York City, stares down a long road to recovery. Noah asked Cuomo how, over six weeks into mass shutdowns, he’s balancing the dueling pressures of keeping people safe versus reopening a devastated economy. “The pressure that people are under is phenomenal,” Cuomo said. “It is traumatic. This is traumatic for people, and that’s the way I think about this.”
The Daily Show
Bills are still being collected, jobs are lost or may never return, and “people are about to burst, on one level, they’re under that kind of pressure”, he continued. “On the other hand, we had 474 people die yesterday. You tell me how many people go outside today and touch other people, I’ll tell you how many people walk into a hospital three days from now. The cause and effect is that tight.”
In New York, where social distancing can’t occur – you’re not getting 6ft of space on a subway car, ever – the number of cases will increase as places open up. “It’s an impossible balance, Trevor,” Cuomo said. Ultimately, he said, it comes down to the data (death rate, hospitalization rate); “you don’t start to reopen until you have those numbers under control.”
Stephen Colbert blasts Trump’s ‘reality show-style’ immigration ban via tweet
As for recovery, “it has to be phased in, it has to be slow and building, and watch that infection rate as you start to open up the valve to reopen”, said Cuomo.
Noah also asked the governor about his relationship with Donald Trump and the federal government. “The relationship between myself and the president is, the president doesn’t like me,” Cuomo said. “That is the relationship. It is unambiguous. It is honest. It is open.” Still, he gave the president credit for an “honest conversation” on Tuesday about ramping up testing. “Who cares about how I feel about him personally? My feelings are irrelevant, my emotions are irrelevant. Just do the job.”
“As the great American lockdown continues, we have reasons to be grateful,” Samantha Bee said on another in-the-woods episode of Full Frontal. Physical distancing is working, “so naturally the question on everyone’s minds is: when can the country reopen?”
“Unfortunately, not yet,” answered Bee, unless you’re watching Fox News. “The sentient bobblehead dolls at Fox News are acting like containing Covid-19 is somehow un-American,” she said, pointing to clips of Laura Ingraham and Harris Faulkner arguing that lockdowns violate their freedoms. “It makes sense that everyone at Fox is fine with people dying so we can get back to work. They’re already used to working for a mummified corpse,” Bee added next to a photo of Fox News’ owner, Rupert Murdoch.
“As scary as it is to hear these idiots dismiss people’s lives, it’s really terrifying that elected officials are saying it too,” Bee continued. And no one is saying that louder, more “all-caps”, than Trump, who last week said that America “wants to be open”.
“Ah, yes, ‘America wants to be open’,” Bee said. “The ‘she was asking for it’ of coronavirus relief measures.”
Bee acknowledged that for many Americans, “it’s understandable to feel angry and upset”, especially since 26 million people are now out of work. “But reopening the economy prematurely could backfire and lead to another shutdown. We’re not facing a choice between saving lives or saving the economy. The simple fact is, the economy is people. And dead people don’t buy stuff.”
So though Americans love “quick and easy fixes” like “gas station boner pills”, Bee concluded, “the only way out of this mess is to finish the hard work we’ve begun” with shutdown measures and physical distancing. “The process to return to normal will be long, hard, sometimes painful – which, coincidentally is the slogan for those boner pills. But unlike those pills, this can work.”
“It is the 50th Earth Day, the big 5-0, and I gotta say, Earth is still looking good – she’s just getting hotter every year,” said Stephen Colbert said on Wednesday’s Late Show. How did Trump celebrate the occasion? By “threatening to blow up chunks of the planet” with a bizarre tweet about instructing the navy to “shoot down” Iranian gunboats if they “harass our ships at sea”.
“Here’s the thing: Trump’s attempt to change the subject to immigration or to China or Iran or to anything is not gonna work,” Colbert said. “Trump’s normal tricks he uses to change the narrative aren’t working, because it’s hard to come up with a more gripping narrative than stay inside or you might die. You can tweet all you want, but it’s hard to capture people’s hearts and minds when they’re worried about their hearts and lungs.
“You can’t have Bill Barr redact the virus or call Ukraine to get dirt on Hunter Virus, or get Mitch McConnell to have 51 Republicans vote that there is no virus,” he continued, addressing Trump. “You can’t even pay the virus $130,000 to stay quiet, which is too bad, because this virus is definitely spanking your ass. So if you want to keep your job, you’re gonna have to do the unthinkable: your job!”