Not so fast, Andrew Cuomo. We see what you did there. After publicly bashing conservative New Yorkers as "extreme" people who have no place in his state, the intolerant Democratic governor wants to blame the media for his unmistakable contempt for those who oppose abortion, support gun rights and defend traditional marriage.
Newsflash: Crapweasel politicians can backtrack and scapegoat, but they can't hide.
When he railed against socially conservative Republican candidates in a radio interview last week, Cuomo hyperbolically singled out those he called "right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay" citizens. Sounding unapologetically purge-tastic, the governor said these political opponents "have no place in the state of New York, because that's not who New Yorkers are." His bigoted comments provoked a fierce social-media-driven backlash led by devout Catholics and Second Amendment activists in the Empire State. And now, he's got job-creating, tax-paying conservative business people threatening to leave. Heckuva job, Andy!
In a desperate damage control attempt, Cuomo issued a statement claiming that the New York Post "distorted" his words. It's always the messenger's fault. The Shove Guv also accused his critics of being "entirely reckless with facts and the truth." Really? There was no equivocation in Cuomo's political eviction wish. Whether he was talking about conservative candidates and/or the voters and donors who support them, you can't get any clearer than "have no place in the state of New York."
Translation: You don't belong. Pack your bags. Don't let the door hit ya on the way out. Scram.
All of his lefty friends on MSNBC and at Soros Central may be cheering Cuomo on, but this marginalization strategy is bound to backfire. Here in Colorado, supposedly moderate Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper threw in with the radical gun-control crowd and is now paying the price. Major businesses have left the state. Two leading state Democratic legislators were recalled last fall by grassroots campaigns outspent 8-to-1 by gun-control forces underwritten by New York Nanny Stater Michael Bloomberg and Bill Gates.
Reminder: It wasn't just "extreme conservatives" who revolted. Pueblo Democrat Angela Giron lost in her Obama-loving Democratic Senate District 3 by a whopping 12 points.
Another state Democrat and staunch gun-control extremist, Evie Hudak, resigned in disgrace last November rather than face the wrath of the independent recallers. Once a hot 2016 Democratic presidential prospect, Hickenlooper's approval ratings have plunged.
Cuomo also has set himself up for an unforgettable schooling by hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers who are gathering in Washington, D.C., this week for the 41st annual March for Life. "I am guessing that Andrew Cuomo's remarks are going to be repeated by every speaker on the platform," Stasia Zoladz Vogel, president of the Buffalo Regional Right to Life Committee, predicted in the Buffalo News before the Wednesday march.
As for Cuomo's reckless dismissal of what he considers an "extreme" minority, a recent poll of New Yorkers showed that the vast majority "support sensible restrictions on abortions, with 80 percent opposing unlimited abortion through the ninth month of pregnancy and 75 percent opposing changes in current law so that someone other than a doctor can perform an abortion." Contrary to Cuomo's distorted view, the 21st-century pro-life movement is a diverse convergence of increasingly young and minority activists, feminist pro-lifers, independents and social conservatives. And contrary to Cuomo's reckless telling of history, pro-life activism is ingrained in New York history.
The suffragists who famously met at Seneca Falls, N.Y., were ardent advocates for life. They didn't mince words. Elizabeth Cady Stanton condemned the "murder of children, either before or after birth." Alice Paul, who crusaded for the Equal Rights Amendment, called abortion "the ultimate exploitation of women." Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, as Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser pointed out in her review of pro-life feminism, was horrified by the abortion industry and the women who enabled it:
"The gross perversion and destruction of motherhood by the abortionist filled me with indignation, and awakened active antagonism. That the honorable term 'female physician' should be exclusively applied to those women who carried on this shocking trade seemed to me a horror. It was an utter degradation of what might and should become a noble position for women."
Now we know where Andrew Cuomo would have stood had he been around when pro-life suffragists came knocking on New York's doors: blocking their way.
Cuomo insists he "respects" all of the people he dumped on last week. Yet, he continues to willfully mischaracterize their positions and smear them as dangerous haters. It's telling that he employs the partisan pejorative labels "anti-gay" and "pro-assault weapon" alongside "right to life." As if endorsing the "right to life" is in itself an act of bigotry or a horrific, unspeakable crime.
There are no do-overs: Cuomo rolled out the unwelcome mat and announced a new state of intolerance. His undemocratic extremism is as extreme as it gets. Out: "I Love New York." In: "New York Hates You." Let the homebuyer, business owner, taxpayer, voter and visitor beware.