New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he would be signing an executive order that would allow him to seize privately held personal protective masks and ventilators.
Cuomo cited shortages in his state, specifically in hospitals and medical care facilities, for the totalitarian order.
Not to be stopped by legal issues, Cuomo said he would be carrying out the order but citizens were free to sue him if they wanted.
“If they want to sue me for borrowing their excess ventilators to save lives, let them sue me,” Cuomo said.
We do not have enough ventilators.
I am signing an Executive Order allowing the state to take ventilators and redistribute to hospitals in need.
The National Guard will be mobilized to move ventilators to where they are urgently required to save lives.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) April 3, 2020
The Associated Press reports:
The move is aimed at the kind of shortages worldwide that authorities say have caused health care workers to fall sick and forced doctors in Europe to make life-or-death decisions about which patients get a breathing machine. To make matters worse, some U.S. states and cities have received essential equipment from the nation’s medical stockpile that’s broken or expired.
Cuomo says New York, the nation’s worst hot spot, could run out of ventilators next week. Louisiana’s governor said New Orleans could exhaust its supply by Tuesday.
Shortages of such things as masks, gowns, and ventilators have led to fierce competition among buyers from Europe, the U.S. and elsewhere.
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As the Western Journal reports, Governor Cuomo said he would either return the seized equipment of pay its former owners.
The report adds: “Once the executive order is signed, it’s unclear what recourse New Yorkers and companies will have to protect their private property.”
Here’s more from the report:
When it was discovered in late March that New York state had a stockpile of the in-demand breathing machines, Cuomo brushed off the unused machines by claiming “we don’t need them yet.”
The state now leads the nation in confirmed COVID-19 cases. According to Johns Hopkins, New York alone has more infected than every country with the exception of Italy and Spain.
New York’s shocking number of cases was seemingly inflated by bad advice given by leaders.
According to the report, Republicans in the state said the order tramples on personal rights and leaves people unable to care for themselves.
“Taking our ventilators by force leaves our people without protection and our hospitals unable to save lives today or respond to a coming surge,” 12 Republican elected officials said in a statement to the governor.