NEW York governor Andrew Cuomo made his final coronavirus address to the state’s residents, ending a 96 day streak, but eagle-eyed watchers were more taken by the miniature bobblehead accompanying the official.
The bobblehead, distributed at a Valley Cats game he did not attend, according to one USA Today journalist, was of Cuomo himself.
The miniature likeness sat to the right of Cuomo, and its bright white gleaming smile was easily visible.
Cuomo was addressing the state 111 days after he first made a coronavirus briefing.
“We have done a full 180 from worst to first,” said Cuomo. “We are controlling the virus better than any state in the county and any nation on the globe.”
The governor also officially announced that New York City will enter Phase 2 of its reopening on Monday.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said from March 1 to June 8, he experienced ‘hell’ as he responded to the coronavirus outbreak[/caption]
An Apple employee at a store in New York City is pictured checking a customer’s temperature on Wednesday as shops reopen[/caption]
The opening will include outside dining, in-store shopping, office jobs, hair salons and barbershops, the real estate industry and car dealerships.
No reporters were present for Friday’s update, and Cuomo spent 10 minutes addressing the camera from behind his desk in a pre-recorded message.
“Why did it take a crisis to bring us together?” he said. “Why does government usually appeal to the worst in us rather than the best? … Why doesn’t government urge us to realize we are members of the same community, the same family, and that we all benefit when we work together?
“Isn’t that what we really showed over the past 111 days, that working together works? That the only way forward is if I protect you and you protect me — I wear a mask for you and you wear a mask for me.”
Times Square is seen here nearly empty in March after the virus shut down the city[/caption]
More than 30,000 people have died in New York from coronavirus[/caption]
New York State tested a record 79,303 people for COVID on Thursday. Only 796 tests, 1 per cent, came back positive.
Cuomo has previously expressed fears over a second wave.
“We had a higher infection rate than countries,” he said. “So we took dramatic action and, God bless New Yorkers.”
Despite New York seeing a significant decline in cases (Cuomo announced on Wednesday 55 new virus hospital admissions and 333 ICU admissions), he’s concerned about “human nature.”
“We test everyday, we get numbers everyday. You can’t lose the focus and the discipline because you tell me how New Yorkers behave tomorrow, I will tell you the infection rate a week from tomorrow,” Cuomo told ABC. “It is that closely linked.”
He said “so many things” still keep him awake at night,” as “we still don’t know where we’re going with [the virus], no one can tell you.”
“You look at what’s going on around the country now with the spike and the number of viral transmissions — that is frightening, you know?”
Cuomo said: “New York is not an island. We can be doing a great job and getting the spread down and the rate of transmission down, but people travel here from other states.”
Across the US, coronavirus infection rates have spiked in at least nine states — Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, and Texas — recorded new single-day highs or set records for seven-day new case averages on Tuesday, a Washington Post analysis found.
MOST READ IN US NEWS
Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, warned on Tuesday the US is still in its first wave of the pandemic.
Fauci said reports of people hanging out bars and other crowded venues as lockdown restrictions have eased are unsettling, especially since the country is not yet in the clear.
“People are talking about a second wave,” he told The Wall Street Journal. “We’re still in the first wave.”