Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday defended quoting the n-word in a live radio interview, pointing to the word being used directly in a Times article about discrimination against Italians he was referencing.
“I was directly quoting The New York Times which wrote an article about offensive slurs to Italian Americans that were also racially offensive,” Cuomo said a news conference touting the opening of an Albany Airport exit on the Northway. “That was the point of the article and I directly quoted The New York Times.”
Asked if he felt it was appropriate to use the word, Cuomo again pointed to The New York Times.
“Talk to the New York Times if you think it’s inappropriate,” he said. “I was just quoting the Times. If I was quoting the Post, I would say talk to the Post."
Cuomo in the interview last week was discussing discrimination against Italian Americans in the United States as he works to have the state commission a statue honoring the famed Catholic nun and saint Mother Cabrini.
Cuomo railed against the prejudice Italians have faced, and quoted a Times article the ran last weekend about the discrimination immigrants faced by the white establishment in the United States.
Cuomo was knocked for using the word by the Working Families Party and New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, both long-standing critics of the governor. But Sen. James Sanders, a Queens Democrat, also was critical of the governor quoting the word and also criticized the Times for writing in the piece.