Trump denies 3,000 Puerto Ricans died due to Hurricane Maria, blames Democrats

Charlene Craig
September 14, 2018

President Trump drew widespread rebukes Thursday - including from several fellow Republicans- after falsely claiming that the number of deaths attributable to Hurricane Maria had been inflated by Democrats to "make me look as bad as possible".

The report came almost a year after a much-maligned visit to Puerto Rico by Trump two weeks after Maria, where he implied that residents should be "proud" that the official death toll at the time was just 16 people, far lower than that of a "real catastrophe, like Katrina". That figure was then compared to the number of deaths reported from September 2017, when the hurricane hit, to February 2018, when the island still struggled with blackouts and a shortages of essential supplies on the road to recovery.

Mr Gutierrez, who is of Puerto Rican heritage, was involved in the USA territory's recovery operation. "How can we make it so more people die?' You think that was actually happening in the White House?" "It's just what happened".

Trump's administration has been faulted for its response to Hurricane Maria.

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Photos have emerged showing 20,000 pallets of bottled water meant for victims still sitting on a runway in Ceiba, Puerto Rico, a year after the storm.

Trump is seemingly ignoring the aftereffects of the storm in his tweet and focusing only on deaths attributable to things like flying debris, drowning and structures that collapse.

The official death count increased months after the storm because the government of Puerto Rico originally did not acknowledge counts from news outlets investigating the impact of the storm.

Cora told reporters he respects Trump, but noted that he doesn't "agree with a lot of stuff he says about us". An "independent study said thousands were lost and Gov. (Ricardo) Rosselló agreed", wrote Scott, who is running for the Senate.

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Hurricane Florence began battering North Carolina on Thursday night, beginning an onslaught that will provide the Federal Emergency Management Agency a chance to fix its bruised reputation following the federal response to Hurricane Maria.

With Hurricane Florence bearing down on the Carolinas, Donald Trump posted a Twitter video in which he both claiming to have everything in hand and warned of catastrophe.

On her Twitter feed, San Juan, Puerto Rico, Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz called Trump's denials "delusional, paranoid, and unhinged from any sense of reality. The loss of any life is tragic".

"The job that FEMA and law enforcement and everybody did, working along with the governor in Puerto Rico, I think was tremendous". Sober as the New York Times is in reporting Trump's latest big lie, it still represents in characterizing him how low we've sunk. I hate that people that make it a political issue. But even some Republicans-especially those in Florida-are among those disagreeing with the president's assertion about the estimate from researchers at George Washington University.

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