Trump’s boasts about ‘great’ hurricane response in Puerto Rico slammed as ‘blatantly false’ – National


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Because the East Coast prepares for Hurricane Florence, U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned the federal authorities is ready for the vicious storm by citing final yr’s catastrophe aid work.

“Hurricane Florence is trying even larger than anticipated,” Trump wrote on Twitter Wednesday morning.

Hurricane Florence downgraded to Category 3 but still ‘extremely dangerous,’ officials say

“We obtained A Pluses for our current hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and did an unappreciated nice job in Puerto Rico, although an inaccessible island with very poor electrical energy and a very incompetent Mayor of San Juan). We’re prepared for the massive one that’s coming!”

The tweet echoed feedback he made Tuesday evening throughout an Oval Workplace briefing about Florence, when he mentioned regardless of the challenges of Puerto Rico being an island: “I really assume it was the most effective jobs that’s ever been performed with respect to what that is all about.”

“The job that FEMA, and legislation enforcement and everyone did working together with the governor in Puerto Rico, I believe was great,” Trump added. “I believe that Puerto Rico was an unimaginable, unsung success.”

WATCH: Hurricane Florence ‘as massive as they’ve seen,’ Trump says

Trump’s feedback come after the federal government’s response to Maria has been harshly criticized. A current report put the loss of life toll of the 2017 storm at almost three,000 folks — most of whom died after the storm attributable to issues from widespread energy outages and water shortages.

The feedback struck a chord with Puerto Rican officers, who’re nonetheless coping with catastrophe aid from the hurricane final yr.

Death toll from Puerto Rico’s Hurricane Maria raised from 64 to almost 3,000

The mayor of San Juan, Carmen Yulín Cruz, who was particularly referred to as out in Trump’s tweet Wednesday morning, responded.

“Success? Federal response in keeping with Trump in Puerto Rico successful?” she requested in a tweet. “If he thinks the loss of life of three,000 folks os [sic] successful God assist us all.”

Puerto Rico’s governor used the eye to name out the inequality between U.S. residents and Puerto Rican residents, who aren’t eligible to vote in U.S. elections.

“No relationship between a colony and the federal authorities can ever be referred to as ‘profitable’ as a result of Puerto Ricans lack sure inalienable rights loved by our fellow Individuals,” Gov. Ricardo Rossello mentioned in a press release.

“Our primary infrastructure was devastated, hundreds of individuals misplaced their lives and plenty of others nonetheless battle

“Now isn’t the time to cross judgement it’s the time to channel each effort to enhance the lives of over three million Individuals in Puerto Rico.”

He additionally requested the federal authorities to increase funding so the island can full its restoration work.

Others referred to as Trump’s remarks “blatantly false.”

“That is an offensive, hurtful and blatantly false remark from the president,” mentioned Democratic Home chief Chuck Schumer on Twitter. “Almost three,000 of our fellow residents died in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. That’s the exact opposite of ‘success.’”

Sen. Bernie Sanders additionally criticized the feedback saying: “Almost three,000 folks died. That’s not a ‘success.’ That could be a tragedy and a shame.”

FEMA has given Puerto Rico greater than $three billion in help for Hurricane Maria associated prices. It calls the response to Maria the “largest and longest federal response to a home catastrophe within the historical past of america.”

However on the time, critics mentioned the U.S. authorities wasn’t adequately ready, and the delayed response was much less pronounced than the catastrophe response on the mainland.

A measured report from the Authorities Accountability Workplace launched this month mentioned FEMA suffered from “useful resource constraints,” and “inadequate bilingual staff” to speak with Puerto Ricans after Maria.

The report additionally in contrast the federal government response to Hurricane Irma in Florida, which precipitated not less than 74 deaths and US$150 billion in damages, to the response to Maria, which precipitated about three,000 deaths and as much as US$95 billion in damages. Florida obtained four.eight million meals and 9.9 million litres of water, whereas Puerto Rico obtained 1.6 million meals and about 700,000 litres of water.

WATCH: Storm chasers warn of ‘catastrophic injury’ with Hurricane Florence 

Trump famous on the time that Puerto Rico was an island and subsequently it was tougher to provide.

The report additionally famous that the native authorities’s “plans had been inadequate for the magnitude of Hurricane Maria,” and that the infrastructure in Puerto Rico was already outdated earlier than Maria hit.

Communities in North and South Carolina are evacuating in preparation for Hurricane Florence, which is anticipated to hit the coast by Saturday.

“This isn’t going to be a glancing blow,” warned Jeff Byard, an administrator with FEMA. “That is going to be a Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina coast.”

WATCH: Hurricane Florence from the Worldwide Area Station

Whereas some mentioned they deliberate to remain put regardless of hurricane watches and warnings extending over the properties of greater than 5.four million folks on the East Coast, many weren’t taking any probabilities.

Trump has declared states of emergency for North and South Carolina and Virginia, opening the best way for federal assist. He mentioned the federal authorities is “completely, completely ready” for Florence.

— with recordsdata from the Related Pres

© 2018 World Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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