Former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo voiced agreement with Mayor Eric Adams of New York City, acknowledging the dire warning about the migrant crisis potentially wreaking havoc on the five boroughs. Cuomo aligned himself with Adams while sharply criticizing other Democrats, President Biden, and Governor Kathy Hochul, over what he termed “madness” in their migrant policies.
Speaking before a predominantly African-American congregation at the God’s Battalion of Prayer Church in Prospect Lefferts Garden, Brooklyn, Cuomo expressed, “The federal government has proven inept in addressing this issue.”
He went on to assert, “The stark reality is that New York City is overwhelmed. We cannot accommodate more individuals than we already have. Furthermore, New York City cannot shoulder the financial burden of this migrant challenge,” echoing statements made on his podcast the previous week.
Cuomo emphasized the colossal financial strain this issue was placing on the city, citing the existing problems of homelessness, rising crime rates, population outflows, and businesses relocating post-COVID. The former governor also criticized Hochul, his former deputy who assumed the gubernatorial office after his resignation, for her reluctance to distribute migrants to other parts of the state.
According to Cuomo, the actions, or lack thereof, taken by both the state and federal governments in addressing the migrant crisis made “no sense” and were tantamount to “madness.” He echoed Mayor Adams’ sentiment that this situation was unsustainable and indefensible. Adams had previously warned that the migrant influx could lead to the destruction of New York City, a sentiment with which Cuomo concurred.
Cuomo underscored, “This is not solely a New York City problem; it is fundamentally a federal and state issue. The federal government must take responsibility, manage the population intelligently, and ensure fairness. Above all, they must bear the financial burden. The last people who should bear this weight are the taxpayers of New York City. We need support from both the federal and state governments.”
In addition to his stance on immigration, Cuomo criticized his own political party’s handling of the crime issue. He acknowledged that people on the streets were genuinely concerned about crime and decried certain Democratic politicians who turned a blind eye to the problem, attributing it to a Republican conspiracy. Cuomo argued that such an approach was nonsensical because crime disproportionately affected marginalized communities.
He specifically criticized the “defund the police” movement, characterizing it as misguided.
Mayor Adams, however, struck a more conciliatory tone on Sunday, expressing gratitude to President Biden’s team for their efforts in addressing the crisis. He acknowledged ongoing discussions with the White House and appreciated Governor Hochul’s support. Nonetheless, Adams maintained his concern about the migrant influx, citing the large number of asylum seekers arriving in the city since the spring of 2022.
Cuomo’s appearance at the church marked a return to the same venue he had chosen for his first public speech in March 2022 after his resignation, during which he asserted being a victim of “cancel culture.”