Published: Sun, September 16, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Trump Continues to Deny Puerto Rico Death Toll Despite Backlash

Trump Continues to Deny Puerto Rico Death Toll Despite Backlash

That study was commissioned by Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello as an independent assessment of mortality that came as a result of Hurricane Maria.

President Trump just went full "birther", or "truther", or, well, crazy. How else to explain his decision, as a hurricane looms off the USA coast, to call adjusted Puerto Rican death-toll figures from Hurricane Maria a Democratic-inspired plot against him?

It was the second time this week that the president had made outlandish claims about Puerto Rico, which also engendered a furious response. Sen. "AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths".

The study, which was conducted without the backing of any political group, surveyed 3,000 residences across the United States' territory and found Puerto Ricans died at a much higher rate in the four months following the hurricane than in the same time period a year earlier. He tweeted that it was only later that Democrats inflated the death toll to "really large numbers, like 3000" just to make him look bad.

He accused Democrats of inflating the official death toll to "make me look as bad as possible".

Cruz blasted Trump last September for not reacting quickly enough after Maria slammed into Puerto Rico and knocked out power on the island, flooded roads, destroyed bridges and left thousands of people stranded. After that, it climbed to 64.

Flattened homes on the island of Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria. As the Washington Post reported, Trump has been unable to get over the criticisms of his response, and insists that his administration responded properly to the crisis in Puerto Rico.

What have Puerto Rican officials said?

"I have an uncle who committed suicide because of the hurricane that happened", said Santos-Vasquez.

Even a few of Mr Trump's fellow Republicans have spoken out against him.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) says it has spent billions of dollars in Puerto Rico, restoring power and helping with property repairs and a massive cleanup.

That's why the official death toll remained relatively low until researchers could examine death records and gain a broader understanding of people's circumstances. He joined team president Sam Kennedy and players Chris Sale, Rick Porcello and Christian Vazquez to hand out medical supplies, water filtration systems and food and water.

Along with post-storm conditions, each death has a complex mix of causes making it hard to definitively apportion blame in every case.

The deaths fell in two categories: direct and indirect. Its inhabitants are USA citizens, though they are barred from voting in presidential elections and have only one congressional representative with limited voting powers. That number comes from the National Hurricane Center report issued less than four months after landfall in December of 2005. "I'll take that but the rest of the 3,000 and plus more died because of the aftermath because of the lack of help that he gave", added Santos-Vasquez.

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