Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.), already facing fierce condemnation from the Jewish community for his latest lockdown order, said in a Friday CNN interview that he believes “the issue” of the recent outbreaks across parts of New York City “is with that ultra-orthodox community,” the New York Post reports.
Recently, areas of New York City, mostly parts of Brooklyn and Queens, have seen an uptick in COVID-19 cases. As a result, Gov. Cuomo issued a lockdown order for those areas affected, which he calls “red zones.”
Many Orthodox Jewish communities live in these “red zones” and, in response to the lockdown preventing them from attending religious services around their holy days, they have staged large protests. Groups like Agudath Israel of America and the Brooklyn Diocese have even sued Cuomo over his executive order for allegedly violating their First Amendment rights.
While the governor made a point of saying, “I don’t care if you’re Roman Catholic, you’re Jewish, you’re Muslim, you’re an atheist. You have to follow the rules of the state, the laws of the state,” he emphasized that he believes the Orthodox Jewish community is “the issue” when it comes to enforcing the lockdowns.
“The cluster is a predominantly ultra-orthodox cluster,” he said. “The Catholic schools are closed because they happen to be in that cluster, but the issue is with that ultra-orthodox community.”
“This is not a matter of religious freedom,” the governor added.
Cuomo, who has had a longtime relationship with New York’s Jewish communities, highlighted this relationship.
“I’m a big supporter of theirs, but you have to follow the rules,” he said, “because we’re seeing the truth and the truth is if you don’t follow the rules, the infection rate spreads, people get sick, and then you make others sick.”
You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.
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White House Confirms It Is Looking Into Shutting Down Oil Pipeline Amid Fuel Crisis
The Biden administration confirmed that it is considering shutting down an oil pipeline in Michigan despite the ongoing fuel crisis in the country.
“Revoking the permits for the [Line 5] pipeline that delivers oil from western Canada across Wisconsin, the Great Lakes and Michigan and into Ontario, would please environmentalists who have urged the White House to block fossil fuel infrastructure, but it would aggravate a rift with Canada and could exacerbate a spike in energy prices that Republicans are already using as a political weapon,” Politico Pro reported. “Killing a pipeline while U.S. gasoline prices are the highest in years could be political poison for Biden, who has seen his approval rating crash in recent months.”
Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked about the report during Monday’s press briefing, asking, “why is the administration now considering shutting down the Line 5 pipeline from Canada to Michigan?”
“So, Peter, that is inaccurate,” Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre claimed. “That is not right. So, any reporting indicating that some decision has been made, again, is not accurate. … So, again, I would — it is inaccurate what you just stated, but —”
“What’s inaccurate?” Doocy asked.
“The reporting about us wanting to shut down the Line 5,” Jean-Pierre said.
“I didn’t say ‘wanting.’ I said, is it being studied right now? Is the administration studying the impact of shutting down the Line 5?”
“Yeah. Yes, we are. We are,” Jean-Pierre admitted.
DOOCY: "Is the administration studying the impact of shutting down the Line 5?"
JEAN-PIERRE: "Yes we are." pic.twitter.com/V5XKhgcmAJ
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) November 8, 2021
The news comes as gas prices have reached their highest since 2014, when Biden was vice president, and are currently about 50% higher than they were when Biden entered office.
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