Trump just doubled down on a lie about Hurricane Maria's death toll

Trump just doubled down on a lie about Hurricane Maria's death toll

President Donald Trump tried to downplay the deaths of almost 3,000 Americans reported lost in the wake of Hurricane Maria by an independent study, with Trump claiming that "Democrats" altered the study to "make me look as bad as possible".

"As time went by it did not go up by much", Trump wrote. That figure was then compared to the number of deaths reported from September 2017, when the hurricane hit, to February 2018, when the island still struggled with blackouts and a shortages of essential supplies on the road to recovery.

"The sad truth is that in trying so hard to make sure that the hurricane did not become 'Trump's Katrina, ' we lost far more lives", he continued, claiming that "more people died in Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico than died in Hurricane Katrina, and than died in the attacks of 9/11".

The George Washington University study, requested by the governor of Puerto Rico, examined an unusually long period of time following the storm in an attempt to detect the hurricane's lingering, indirect effects on mortality.

Paul Ryan, the Republican house speaker, said he had "no reason to dispute" the death toll of 3,000. But I think this is more than politics.

Puerto Rican officials have previously blamed mismanagement on Fema, whereas President Trump has said authorities on the island were incompetent.

The president tweeted that the 3,000 number was offered up by Democrats to make him look bad.

An analysis of the Puerto Rico death toll by Washington Post political correspondent Philip Bump slammed the Trump denials as "grotesque", and "obviously untrue".

Sunny Hostin, who is of Puerto Rican descent, was not having it. "We are professionals of public health".




Hurricane Florence is the first major test of the Federal Emergency Management Agency since its much-criticized response to Maria, which caused devastation when it struck Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm a year ago.

The Trump tweet generated strong emotions of anger and sorrow.

Trump has focused his ire on San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz, who positioned herself as a critic of his administration in the immediate aftermath of the storms.

In January, Cora led a Red Sox delegation to Puerto Rico to distribute aid.

Trump made the comments Thursday on Twitter as Hurricane Florence bears down on the Carolinas.

Earlier this week, Trump called the USA response in Puerto Rico "an incredible unsung success". Rossello says, "It's not a time to fight, to have political noise, to use these things for the benefit of one party or another".

Earlier this week, Trump hailed his administration's response to Maria as "an incredible, unsung success".

Ryan didn't answer a question about whether Trump's claim disturbed him or whether Trump should apologize to the victims' families.

A Harvard University study in May said at least 4,645 died.

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