New York Gov. Cuomo pledges state aid effort for Puerto Rico

Andrew Cuomo
In this photo taken March 1, 2017, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks in New York. House Republican leaders want to shift more than $2 billion in Medicaid costs from upstate counties to the New York State government. The provision would help mostly Republican-controlled counties that have struggled to subsidize Medicaid payments for the poor. New York City wouldn’t get the same relief. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

NEW YORK (AP) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday launched a state effort to help Puerto Rico.

The Democrat announced the relief effort after visiting the hurricane-ravaged island Friday. It will encourage residents statewide to donate goods and will raise funds from the business community for organizations in Puerto Rico.

It also will include efforts from medical professionals to send health care workers from New York to the island and provide support in getting medicine and medical supplies.

Cuomo was joined by entertainer Jennifer Lopez for the announcement.

Lopez, co-chair of the Empire State Relief & Recovery Effort, urged people to support Puerto Rico, the Caribbean and Mexico with donations and contributions.

“I cannot tell you what it meant to me and to the people of Puerto Rico to see New York not only pledge support but Governor Cuomo to actually show up with resources and supplies,” Lopez said.

Cuomo also made a reference to Republican President Donald Trump’s comments criticizing athletes who protest during the national anthem, saying “instead of arguing with football players … why don’t we put the politics aside and focus on helping Americans in desperate need.”

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