Trump Accuses Democrats of Altering Statistics on Hurricane Deaths in Puerto Rico

  • Trump Accuses Democrats of Altering Statistics on Hurricane Deaths in Puerto Rico

Trump Accuses Democrats of Altering Statistics on Hurricane Deaths in Puerto Rico

"I think Puerto Rico was an incredible, unsung success", the president said.

"3,000 people did not die in the two hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico", Mr. Trump tweeted Thursday.

Cora, who spends time in Puerto Rico in the offseason, said many people on the island are still struggling, but he's encouraged by the progress being made every day.

Rossello actually praised Trump effusively after the hurricane - and Trump returned the favor, calling Rossello "a great guy and leader who is working really hard".

San Juan Mayor Carmen Cruz responded to Trump's comments Thursday morning in a series of messages on Twitter.

However Trump implied the death toll was revised for political reasons. Ryan noted he had been in Puerto Rico after the hurricane hit and said it had been "devastating". It took more than 11 months, for example, to fully restore electricity.

That number was produced by public health experts at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., in a report commissioned by the USA territory's governor, Ricardo Rossello. He said just six to 18 people had been reported dead when he visited two weeks after the storm and suggested that many had been added later "if a person died for any reason, like old age". The death toll in Puerto Rico had been officially recorded as 64 for almost a year, despite convincing evidence that the figure was too low because official death certificates had failed to take into account the long-range impacts of the storm.

"The study is done by academics, not the Democratic Party", Bacon said.

President Trump tosses paper towels into a crowd as he hands out supplies at Calvary Chapel, Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, in October.

The researchers pointed to several problems in the death-certification process that contributed to the island government's initial undercounting of fatalities. Cruz had earlier described the federal disaster response in the United States territory a "despicable act of neglect".

The statement Thursday is in response to President Donald Trump's tweet rejecting the study's conclusion. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, whose parents were Puerto Rican immigrants, spoke on the House floor in front of a printout of the Puerto Rican flag, saying Trump is "delusional" and incapable or "empathy or basic human decency".

The statement from the Milken Institute School of Public Health said the study was commissioned by the government of Puerto Rico and was carried out "with complete independence and freedom from any kind of interference". He was particularly pilloried for being out of touch when he praised FEMA Director Michael Brown: "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job", he said.

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". Instead Trump is taking victory laps for his handling of the hurricane.