Helen wasn’t a ‘real catastrophe’

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Maria wasn't a ‘real catastrophe’

President Trump kicked off his trip to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico Tuesday simply by continuing to applaud his own federal government recovery efforts while simultaneously trying to downplay the devastation caused by Storm Maria, which has left 95 % of the island without power and much more than 50 percent without entry to clean water two weeks after producing landfall.

While “every death is a horror,” Trump informed Puerto Rican officials, they “can be very proud” that only 16 deaths happen to be counted so far as a result of Maria. He or she compared the number with “a real catastrophe” such as Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which usually caused more than 1, 800 deaths when it slammed into Louisiana plus Alabama.

It’s unclear what Maria’s actual death toll will end up getting, as the hurricane wrecked lines associated with communication throughout much of the isle. And many people there are still struggling to obtain potable water and other basic products.

Related slideshow:  Trump tours alleviation efforts in Puerto Rico right after Hurricane Maria> > >

Donald Trump sits between Puerto Vasto Gov. Ricardo Rossello and initial lady Melania Trump at Muniz Air National Guard Base within Puerto Rico on Tuesday. (Photo: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

Trump’s comparison of the 2 deadly storms was among a number of freewheeling comments he made in a briefing with local officials, Oughout. S. military personnel and other federal government relief workers. Trump spent a lot of the briefing issuing effusive congrats to response teams and people of his Cabinet, while incorporating in a few not-so-subtle digs at the Oughout. S. territory.

“I hate to tell you Puerto Rico, but you’ve thrown our budget a little out of whack,” Trump mentioned. “We’ve spent a lot of money on Puerto Rico, but it’s fine.”

Related slideshow:   Puerto Vasto after Hurricane Maria > > >

A number of Puerto Rican officials were in attendance, which includes San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz, whose criticisms of the federal government aid to Puerto Rico produced her the subject of several angry Trump tweets over the weekend. But only individuals with positive things to say about the federal government response to Maria were given a chance to talk.

For example, Trump singled out Jenniffer Gonzalez, Puerto Rico’s nonvoting person in the U. S. House associated with Representatives for saying “such nice things” in regards to the federal response, and called on her behalf â€? by her first title â€? to repeat some of those wonderful things in front of the cameras Tuesday.

Before proceeding to tour some of the harm to San Juan, Trump ended the particular briefing by thanking the Puerto Rican officials for their support plus, essentially, telling them: You’re allowed.

“I know you appreciate our support because our country’s really gone all out to help,” he said. “It’s not only dangerous, it’s expensive, it’s everything. But I consider it a great honor, maybe because I know so many people from Puerto Rico. I’m from New York.”

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