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New York state GOP says taxpayers "chipped in" to buy Cuomo one-way ticket to Canada

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a 2014 photo.

AP

Republicans have a message for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo: If you don't think America was ever great, leave. The New York Republican State Committee said Thursday that state taxpayers "have chipped in $55" to buy a one-way bus ticket to Canada for Cuomo.

The governor has not responded to the state GOP's offer, which came amid backlash over remarks he made this week, saying America "was never that great." 

The Albany-to-Montreal ticket is valid on Friday, the New York state GOP said in a statement.

Cuomo said on Wednesday, "We are not going to make America great again. It was never that great." He was attempting to make a larger point about women's equality. 

"We will reach greatness when every American is fully engaged. We will reach greatness when discrimination and stereotyping against women -- 51 percent our our population -- is gone, and every woman's reach full potential is realized and unleashed," Cuomo added.

Many, however, have viewed his remark about America "never" being "that great" as a gaffe on Cuomo's part.

"Love it or leave it; that's your choice, Mr. Cuomo," New York GOP spokeswoman Jessica Proud said in a statement. "But if you truly believe in America, stay here and apologize to New York school children and their parents, and all Americans, for advancing the 'hate America' narrative being pushed by the radical left of the Democratic Party."

Cuomo, a Democrat, is currently seeking re-election for his third term. His Republican challenger, Marc Molinaro, almost immediately released a statement condemning Cuomo's words. He's since appeared on Fox News, slamming Cuomo and countering: "America has always been great." 

Cuomo is also facing a primary challenge from Cynthia Nixon, an education activist and former "Sex And The City" star. She responded to his comments, too, saying: "I think this is just another example of Andrew Cuomo trying to figure out what a progressive sounds like and missing by a mile." 

President Trump weighed in, sparking a Twitter fight with the governor himself. Mr. Trump mocked Cuomo, claiming Cuomo is "having a total meltdown."

Cuomo responded with a clarification of his original comments, tweeting: "What you say would be 'great again' would not be great at all...We will not go back to discrimination, segregation, sexism, isolationism, racism or the KKK."