We are guessing the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences may have been considering other public services -- from other elected leaders.
Was President Trump was in the running? Early on, the White House-led daily pandemic press conferences seem to promise this. Quality-wise, however, they were weak at best.
In this version of Trump TV, the President predicted COVID-19 would end as quick as it started.
He predicted the pandemic would stop by Easter, an April holiday. (Did he mean April 2021?) And yes, even before these briefings, Trump called COVID a hoax. Did he ever take that crack back? (As of Monday morning, Nov. 23, 12,249,528 Americans have been confirmed as having COVID, and 256,798 individuals have died.)
Cuomo, to borrow a TV marketing theme from NBC, was “must see" TV in the March-May period, especially when information was scarce. This included the efforts around the lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), weary, over-worked medical workers, a shortage of hospital beds -- as well a special guest appearance from Cuomo’s brother, CNN’s Chris Cuomo.
We don’t have specific viewership numbers for Gov. Cuomo TV appearances. But guess it did well — coming smack in the middle of other big time cable TV news content — the Trump impeachment (early in the year), and then the Presidential campaign itself (during and afterwards).
Cuomo got the Emmy nod for his "masterful use of television to inform and calm people around the world." Daily briefings -- totaling 111 -- were carried live by New York’s local TV stations, as well as portions on national cable TV news networks.
Mind you, many other states elected officials in the U.S — such as California Gov.Gavin Newsom — also had daily briefings. New York State and California witnessed initial sharp infection rates early in the year. Both are tops in terms of U.S. state population.
This long-form, PSA-like content — comforting at times — was necessitated by a pandemic infection not seen in more than 100 years.
Next time, hope for a wider array of public service content from The White House — complete with scientific and useful TV information. No apprentices need apply.