3,000 dead, but Trump hails Hurricane Maria response as ‘unsung success’

3,000 dead, but Trump hails Hurricane Maria response as ‘unsung success’

3,000 dead, but Trump hails Hurricane Maria response as ‘unsung success’

President Trump on Thursday roundly denied that almost 3,000 people died when Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico - and accused Democrats of fudging the death toll to "make me look as bad as possible".

Cruz quickly responded, implying that the president was out of touch with what had really happened in Puerto Rico.

With Hurricane Florence fast approaching the southeastern US and due to make landfall on Thursday, Trump pointed to his administration's emergency preparedness, saying he handled the situation in Puerto Rico well, despite what critics said.

Last month she described Mr Trump's handling of Maria as a "stain on his presidency".

"If it wasn't for the churches and private organizations, we truly would not have received help from anyone", Ruiz said.

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San Juan, Puerto Rico is a two and a half hour plane ride from Miami. On Oct. 8 the approvals began rolling again, but with a large spike suggesting a backlog.

The president added that his administration "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".

"During our broader study, we found that many physicians were not oriented in the appropriate certification protocol", according to the report from the researchers at GWU.

Overall, compared with Harvey and Irma, Maria saw more funds loaned to homeowners rather than business owners.

The Puerto Rican government revised Hurricane Maria's official death toll from 64 to 2,975 last month following the study.

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The co-hosts questioned whether Trump even "cares" about how many died in Puerto Rico, and whether - as Whoopi Goldberg put it - "he's living in a whole other realm of reality".

Chavez said in a statement that about 700 pallets of water had been distributed, but there were complaints about the smell and taste.

"I ignore them because none of them make sense", said Michelle Cruz, a 48-year-old airline worker whose mother died in December from septicemia after contracting an infection in a hospital during surgery after Maria.

As far as Trump's response is concerned, the most lasting image of his involvement with Hurricane Maria will be the time he visited Puerto Rico and threw rolls of paper towels to survivors. "But I don't pay attention to him".

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