Trump says Puerto Ricans 'want everything done for them'

02 October, 2017, 00:11 | Author: Elaine Woods
  • Trump is urged to do far more for Puerto Rico

"To the people of Puerto Rico: Don't believe the #FakeNews!"

The emotional plea of San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz on Friday felt like a turning point, although it was overshadowed in the news by the resignation of President Donald Trump's health secretary, Tom Price.

The mayor of Puerto Rico's largest city, San Juan, criticized Trump on Saturday, after begging for additional federal assistance, and contrasted the administration's response with that of Goya, an American foods producer, which donated 200,000 pounds of food.

President Trump said the governor is a partner in the recovery effort. "10,000 Federal workers on island doing a fantastic job".

Mr Trump has pledged to spare no effort to help the U.S. territory recover in the aftermath of the hurricane, and also tweeted that military personnel and first responders had done "an awesome job" despite having "no electric, roads, phones etc".

Trump's suggestion that some Puerto Ricans did not want to work also appeared likely to stoke resentment at a time when numerous island's first responders, desperately working to keep their own families alive, have been unable to join in the larger relief effort. She's not doing that. When federal officials reported late in the week that they had reached 35 municipalities, Santiago noted that Puerto Rico had 78 in total.

Power is still out and water is scarce for numerous island's three million residents. "The governor called and said, 'Look, you do.' And they did it right away", she said.

They will first travel to NY and then head to Puerto Rico.

"Our priorities at this juncture keep being food delivery, delivery of gas, making sure that the hospitals are working, making sure we can get more hospitals on line, that they get their diesel and their fuel", Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares said Saturday.

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President Trump called such reports "fake news" throughout the day on Saturday.

After Trump's tweets, Cruz said on MSNBC she wasn't "saying anything nasty" about him.

Duke also tried to move on from the remarks she made Thursday in which she called the federal relief effort a "good-news story".

The president also dedicated several tweets to pushing back against what he described as "fake news" about the response to Hurricane Maria, which killed at least 16 people in the USA territory.

Even worse than that, the mayor of this town of 43,000 told the crisis co-ordination centre 25 miles away in the capital, San Juan, there was no water - he had been forced to drain his municipal swimming pool in order that his people could wash, bathe and flush their toilets. By now, telecommunications are back for about 30 percent of the island, almost half of the supermarkets have reopened at least for reduced hours and about 60 percent of the gas stations are pumping.

"I think it's unfair to say we haven't done everything we can because we have done everything that we can and will continue to do so", Mulvaney said.

But after Trump's blast, she took to Twitter to thank Republican lawmakers who had visited the island.

The devastation is likely to lead more people to leave, and as the population decreases, so does the tax base, economists said. "For the last two days, we've been very involved in figuring out how we can get major amounts of cash to Puerto Rico".

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