In the eyes of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, U.S. Reps. Chris Collins and Tom Reed have committed treason against New York.
The Democratic governor escalated his critique of how the two New York Republican congressmen voted Thursday when the House passed a $4.1 trillion budget plan. The resolution will allow Congress to consider tax reform legislation under a process known as reconciliation, which will allow the Senate to pass it with a simple majority.
The current tax reform framework includes a provision to eliminate the state and local tax deduction. Cuomo has railed against the proposal because he believes it would have a negative impact on New York.
Before the vote, he urged GOP members of the state's congressional delegation to oppose the budget. Seven of the nine members voted against the plan. Collins, R-Clarence, and Reed, R-Corning, supported the resolution.
On a conference call with reporters Friday, Cuomo derided the votes as "modern day treason" and referred to Collins and Reed as "the Benedict Arnolds of today."
"If the states that are affected, if their congressional delegations actually acted in the interest of their state and their district, this would fail," Cuomo said. "So for those congresspeople the question is, are you more loyal to your district or are you more loyal to your political party boss?"
Chris Martin, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee, shot back at Cuomo.
"Andrew Cuomo refuses to take responsibility for a fiscal crisis he created," Martin said. "As New Yorkers of all income levels flee the state due to excessive state income and property taxes, Cuomo continues to blame others for his policy failures in Albany."
With passage of the budget resolution, the tax reform legislation will be introduced next week. The House Ways and Means Committee plans to begin its review of the bill Nov. 6.