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Puerto Ricans Remind Us That Trump’s Hurricane Response Was A Failing Grade



President Donald Trump has frequently suggested that his administration’s response to helping the people of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria hit the island was stellar. Puerto Ricans, however, disagree.

A poll jointly conducted by the Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation found that only 15 percent of residents in the island territory felt that the Trump administration’s response to the natural disaster last year was either “good,” “very good” or “excellent.” More than half of those polled — 52 percent in total — thought the response was “poor.”

Nearly 3,000 citizens on the island perished in the aftermath of the storm, according to a recent study on the issue. Yet despite this sad statistic, Trump still insists that his response wasn’t just adequate, but also “one of the best” responses ever to a disastrous hurricane hitting the U.S.

Trump also took aim in a tweet on Wednesday against critics of his administration’s response to Hurricane Maria last year. “We got A Pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and did an unappreciated great job in Puerto Rico, even though an inaccessible island with very poor electricity and a totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan),” he wrote in a tweet.

The president also explained that his administration was prepared for the next impending disaster. “We are ready for the big one that is coming!” Trump wrote, referring to Hurricane Florence which is fast approaching the U.S. east coast.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) was dissatisfied with the president’s assessment, and sent out a warning of his own via Twitter to residents in Florence’s path. “Get out of there,” Murphy wrote to citizens in the area.

“If you’re in Florence’s path and considering riding it out, your President just said that a hurricane response where 3,000 die is his measure of success,” Murphy added.

Some concern may be warranted: it was revealed earlier this week that the administration had transferred $10 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to Immigrant and Customs Enforcement (ICE). While that is a small amount of the overall budget for FEMA, many may see it as a sign that Trump isn’t taking the threat of disaster preparedness very seriously.

Featured image credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr





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