New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will soon receive the International Emmy Founders Award for his daily television briefings on the coronavirus pandemic, the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced Friday. The academy said Cuomo will be recognized for “his leadership during the Covid-19 pandemic and his masterful use of television to inform and reassure people around the world” in a live-streamed show on Monday.
“The governor’s 111 daily briefings worked so well because he effectively created TV shows with characters, plotlines, and stories of success and failure,”
In the early months of the pandemic, when New York City was one of the global epicenters of the virus, Cuomo conducted daily media briefings to inform the public about the status of the outbreak. The 111 consecutive daily briefings, which ended on June 19, attracted a total of 59 million viewers, the academy said.
The Founders Award is given to an individual or organization that “crosses cultural boundaries to touch our common humanity.” Past recipients include Vice President Al Gore, Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg.
More than 580,000 people have tested positive in the state, and more than 34,000 have died since the pandemic began, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. And while constraints kept the daily number of cases on the rise rapidly over the summer, Cuomo has still been criticized by some for how he has handled the pandemic, particularly in state nursing homes.
Some condemned the governor’s Emmy on Twitter and wrote that the award ignores the problems the state has experienced during the pandemic.
“This award makes sense because Cuomo is not actually a competent, empathetic governor – he’s just playing one on TV,” wrote one progressive activist.
New York is currently experiencing fewer hospitalizations than it did at its worst point in the pandemic, according to The Associated Press. But like the rest of the nation, things increase when the holiday season threatens. Earlier this week, New York City closed its schools after reaching a 3% positivity.