Thursday, 20 September, 2018

Donald Trump rejects Hurricane Maria death toll in Puerto Rico, blames Democrats

FEMA chief Coastal NC residents should leave Trump says his response to the hurricane that killed almost 3,000 people was 'incredibly successful'
Kenny Thornton | 13 September, 2018, 17:09

Several of the women of ABC's "The View" slammed President Donald Trump for his comments on the hurricane response in Puerto Rico - leading co-host Sunny Hostin to allege that the president and the government allowed people to die, as Mediaite reported.

But his comments come weeks after Puerto Rico's governor raised the USA territory's official death toll from Hurricane Maria from 64 to 2,975.

The Republican president suggested the hurricane death toll was artificially inflated by adding those who passed away from natural causes such as old age.

"The job that FEMA and law enforcement and everybody did working along with the governor in Puerto Rico, I think, was tremendous".

In October 2017, Trump touted the low death toll in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria, which at the time consisted of only 16 certified deaths.

That assessment brought sharp rebukes from officials in Puerto Rico and congressional Democrats.

'GET OUT OF ITS WAY!': 'Monster' Hurricane Florence aims to drench Carolinas
Downpours and flooding would be especially severe, lasting for days, if the storm stalls over land. Past history suggests this might prove disastrous.

Last May, Harvard University public health researchers estimated the death toll was even higher.

For much of the past year, the government had formally acknowledged just 64 deaths from the hurricane, which ravaged much of the territory and destroyed critical infrastructure. "Obviously with Maria, we had not a supply issue, we had distribution issues", he said during a briefing about Hurricane Florence.

Santana's images appear to have been taken by drone, and he accompanied them saying, "Although you do not believe it ... nearly a million boxes of water that were never delivered to the people of PR, before the emergency of Hurricane Maria".

Earlier Tuesday, President Donald Trump had reiterated his praise for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's response.

Last month she described Mr Trump's handling of Maria as a "stain on his presidency". He also said he was still waiting for Trump to respond to a petition to help Puerto Rico complete work on emergency housing restoration programs and debris removal. "Our basic infrastructure was devastated, thousands of our people lost their lives and many others still struggle".

More than a million people are under mandatory evacuation orders, and coastal residents frantically boarded up homes and businesses and hit the road as the storm approached.

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