President Donald Trump said Wednesday his administration is ready for Hurricane Florence and insisted that his administration's widely-analyzed response to the devastation in Puerto Rico last year was a "great little appreciated job."
In a series of morning tweets while the massive Florence was on the southeastern coast of the United States, Trump was enraged by criticism of the response to Hurricane Maria, which killed 3,000 people in Puerto Rico.
"We obtained A Pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and we did a great job that was not appreciated in Puerto Rico, despite being an inaccessible island with very little electricity and a totally incompetent San Juan mayor). for the big event that is to come! Trump tweeted.
President Donald Trump talks about Hurricane Florence after an informational meeting at the White House Oval Office in Washington on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. (AP Photo / Susan Walsh)
His next dispatch warned people about Florence, which according to forecasts would release massive amounts of rain in the southeast already soaked by the end of this week.
"Hurricane Florence looks even bigger than expected." It will be arriving soon. FEMA, first responders and law enforcement are supplied and are ready. Watch yourself! & # 39;
The administration's efforts in Puerto Rico received widespread criticism, and he fought with Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz. But after visiting the island last September, Trump said the Puerto Ricans were fortunate that the storm did not produce a catastrophe similar to the ravages of Hurricane Katrina along the Gulf Coast.
In total, about 1,800 people died in the storm of 2005. The governor of Puerto Rico last month raised the number of official deaths in the US territory by Hurricane Maria from 64 to 2,975. It is also estimated that the storm has caused $ 100 billion in damages.
Yulín Cruz resumed his role as a sharp-tongued Trump critic on Tuesday and tweeted that "Trump just does not understand." Therefore, his neglect of Puerto Rico cost around 3,000 lives. Unfortunately, it seems he will never get it. "
& # 39; Success? The federal response according to Trump in Puerto Rico was a success? she added later. & # 39; If he thinks that the death of 3,000 people [sic] a success, God help us all. "
As the night wore on and news spread that Trump's Department of Homeland Security had changed almost $ 10 million from FEMA to ICE for immigration detention programs, Yulín Cruz took off his boxing gloves and undressed.
& # 39; Pres Trump thinks lose [sic] 3,000 lives is a success. Can you imagine what he thinks is failure? she wrote.
Yulín Cruz also revealed that FEMA had received 2,431 requests for funeral assistance after Hurricane Maria, but approved only 75.
"Oh, yes, Mr. Pres, another sign of success? & # 39; she tweeted.
On Tuesday in the Oval Office, the president praised the response to the series of storms. "I think Puerto Rico was an incredible success, not recognized."
The governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, took advantage of the use of the word "successful" by Trump and said in a statement issued on Tuesday: "No relationship between a colony and the federal government can be called 'successful'. because Puerto Ricans lack certain inalienable rights enjoyed by our American compatriots in the states. "
Rosselló called Hurricane Maria "the worst natural disaster in our modern history" and said there was still work to be done before they could move on to other recovery stages. He also said he was still waiting for Trump to respond to a request to help Puerto Rico complete the work of the emergency housing restoration and debris removal programs.
Trump, who for a long time had struggled to express empathy in times of national crisis, provoked outrage when during his visit to the island he antagonized the mayor of San Juan and handed out paper towels to the victims as if he were throwing baskets.
While defending the handling of the previous storm, he urged caution regarding the new attack on North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.
President Donald Trump, left, listens as FEMA Administrator Brock Long talks about Hurricane Florence at the White House Oval Office in Washington on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. Secretary of Homeland Security, Kirstjen Nielsen, listen to the right. (AP Photo / Susan Walsh)
"The safety of Americans is my top absolute priority," Trump told reporters in the Oval Office. "We do not save any expense." We are totally prepared. We are ready. We are ready as nobody has ever been.
The president, flanked by maps of the storm and the heads of the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said Florence is unlikely to change course before it hits land with winds of 130 mph and rain potentially ruinous in the future. days.
"They have not seen anything like what comes to us in 25, 30 years, maybe," Trump said about the states on the path of the storm. "It's tremendously big and tremendously wet." A tremendous amount of water. "
Florence was expected to fly late Thursday or early Friday, then slow down and run for days, discharging 1 to 2-1 / 2 feet of rain that could cause inland flooding and cause environmental havoc by washing the sites of industrial waste and pig farms.
North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia ordered massive evacuations along the coast.