NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the federal government wants personal information from state residents as part of its vaccine distribution program.
Cuomo said the federal government's request could lead to them using the patient information -- including identity numbers - to track undocumented immigrants.
"The data use agreement says the information will be used by CDC, HHS, and other federal partners," Cuomo said on a conference call. "Why would you possibly need a person's driver's license number or Social Security number or passport number before they receive a vaccine? Why? There is no legitimate health reason. This is just another example of them trying to extort the state of New York to get information at DHS and ICE to deport people."
Cuomo said he wouldn't do it. "They extorted me on the trusted traveler program, I won't do it now."
"Any democratic government who agrees to give them this information doesn't understand what they are doing or doesn't understand what it means to be a Democrat," he said. "Why do you want the drivers license, social security, passport? What legitimate health reason do you have?"
Cuomo said he is sending the Trump administration his reply, asking why they are seeking the information.
"Why do you need an id number," the governor said. "Why do you need a passport or a license or a social security number to do a vaccine? Who are you sharing it with your federal partners? Will you say it won't be used for immigration purposes? And again, why do you need an ID for a public health purpose, who are you going to share it with, how do you protect the privacy of it, or are you coming up with a whole new ID system for people in this country?"
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