NY Gov. Cuomo Calls State Republicans' Vote For House Tax Bill 'Treasonous'
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said the actions of state Republicans who voted for the House tax reform plan were "treasonous."
Several Republican congressmen subsequently accused Cuomo of lying about discussing the House tax bill with them.
Cuomo criticized the tax bill because it removes the SALT (state and local tax) deduction for residents in high tax states like his, as well as New Jersey, California and Connecticut.
Cuomo called the tax bill "poison for New York," and accused state Republicans of "violating their oath" by allowing party leaders to "force" them to vote for it, according to the Syracuse Post-Standard.
"It's treasonous. It's modern-day Benedict Arnold," Cuomo said, referring to the Continental officer who plotted the surrender of his own troops to the British at the downstate town of Haverstraw, N.Y.
Rep. Tom Reed (R-N.Y.), of the state's Southern Tier, called Cuomo an "outright liar" regarding his conversation about the tax bill, the New York Times reported.
Reed said he was "appalled" that "a man who is trying to run for president" would "mischaracterize" the conversation.
Three other New York Republicans who voted for the tax bill all told the Times that they never spoke to Cuomo, despite the governor's claims.
"I've got to wonder if he's lost it. I mean it's outrageous," Rep. Chris Collins of Erie County said, " He not only never called me, [but] he made up a quote."
Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi told the Times that Cuomo was making the point that his state's Republican delegation was put under pressure by party leaders to vote for the bill, even if it hurt constituents.
Downstate Republican Reps. Pete King of Long Island and Dan Donovan of Staten Island voted against the measure.