New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo may have given his political opponents a ripe target with a surprise assertion: "We are not going to make America great again—it was never that great," Cuomo said in a speech Wednesday, reports the AP. "We have not reached greatness. We will reach greatness when every American is fully engaged." The remark drew some gasps, laughter, and applause. See it in this video. As Syracuse.com reports, Republicans, including President Trump, quickly pounced. The president tweeted Cuomo's line in all-caps and added, "Can you believe this is the Governor of the Highest Taxed State in the U.S., Andrew Cuomo, having a total meltdown!" And Cuomo's GOP opponent, Marcus Molinaro, said Cuomo should apologize to the nation.
"America, with its imperfections, has always been great," said Molinaro. As the backlash grew, Cuomo's press secretary sought to clarify: "The governor believes America is great and that her full greatness will be fully realized when every man, woman, and child has full equality," said Dani Lever. In his speech, Cuomo sounded a similar theme, saying that Trump wanted to return to an era in America when things such as gay marriage and women's equality didn't exist, and "before these new immigrants started to come across the border," reports the New York Times. Cuomo is a rumored 2020 candidate, and Fox News' coverage predicts his line will be a prominent one in GOP ads if he runs. (Read more Andrew Cuomo stories.)