Donald Trump held a conference about preparations for Hurricane Florence, which is expected to slam the Carolinas as a Category 4 or higher storm. He was asked about what lessons might be taken from what happened in Puerto Rico during Hurricane Maria.
Officials recently raised the official death toll in Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria from 64 to 2,975, mostly due to Trump’s “inability to get the job done” according to San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz.
Of course, Trump didn’t characterize it that way today: “I think Puerto Rico was incredibly successful. Puerto Rico was actually our toughest one of all because it’s an island, so you can’t truck things onto it, everything’s by boat. We moved a hospital into Puerto Rico, a tremendous military hospital in the form of a ship. You know that. And I actually think and the governor has been very nice and if you ask the governor, he’ll tell you what a great job. I think probably the hardest one we had by far was Puerto Rico because of the island nature, and I actually think it was one of the best jobs that’s ever been done with respect to what this is all about.”
He added: “Puerto Rico got hit not with one hurricane but two…The job that FEMA and law enforcement and everybody did working along with the governor in Puerto Rico I think was tremendous. I think that Puerto Rico was an incredible unsung success. Texas, we have been given A-pluses for. Florida, we’ve been given A-pluses for. I think in a certain way the best job we did was Puerto Rico, but nobody would understand that. It’s harder to understand. It was a very hard thing to do because of the fact they had no electric before the storms hit, it was dead, as you probably know. So we’ve gotten a lot of receptivity, a lot of thanks for the job we did in Puerto Rico.”