Cuomo: God Asks if You've Been a Good Progressive When You Get to the Pearly Gates

March 7, 2018

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D., N.Y.) on Wednesday touted his progressive record by saying God would find it more impressive than that of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D.).

Cuomo took a question about his dismissal of actress Cynthia Nixon’s gubernatorial run, in which he joked de Blasio may have put Nixon up to it. Cuomo told Errol Louis of New York's Spectrum News 1 that he has political differences with de Blasio.

"There's no doubt that the mayor and I have political differences," Cuomo said. "I don’t think progressive politics is a function of rhetoric and words, I think it is a function of results."

He then used the image of coming to the gates of heaven and being asked whether he was a good progressive, and he said his record would be stronger than de Blasio’s.

"I believe when you go to the Pearly Gates and our Lord says, ‘Have you been a good progressive?’ He says, ‘Show me the list of what you got done,’" Cuomo said.

"And I have accomplished more progressive results in this state than have been accomplished by any administration and I believe that is factually, objectively irrefutable," he added.

He knocked de Blasio for his plan to take ten years to build new jails in which to move inmates from Rikers Island.

"I don't believe a progressive administration says it takes me to 10 years to build a jail," Cuomo said. "Which, by the way, means it's two mayors from now, three City Councils, which may as well mean it's in never-never land."

"Rikers Island, it's not ten years," he added. "Ten years means you don't want to get it done as a priority. It took you one year to build Yankee Stadium. How can it take ten years to build a jail?"

He said his philosophy is that progressives fail when they do not deliver policy victories.

"The reason why people turned on the progressive parties, the progressive Democrats was because they talked a good game but they didn't produce," Cuomo said. "That's the fundamental premise of my political philosophy."

"I don't believe a progressive administration tolerates more homeless people on the streets than ever before," he added. "That is repugnant to me of the definition of a progressive administration."

He said de Blasio’s handling of the homelessness problem in New York City has shown that he needs to do more to prove his mettle.

"You need to prove to people you can make a difference. And when you have people, the poorest New Yorkers, more minorities than anything else and they are subjected to the worst conditions," Cuomo said. "Don't give me a speech about how much you care. Show me what you do and that's what we're trying to do in this budget."