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


President Donald Trump is rejecting the official death count from Hurricane Maria and falsely accusing Democrats of inflating the Puerto Rican toll from the storm past year to make him "look as bad as possible".

Earlier this month, Puerto Rico's governor formally raised the death toll from Hurricane Maria to an estimated 2,975 from 64, following the study conducted by researchers at The George Washington University at the federal government's request.

Despite significant evidence showing almost 3,000 people were killed in the devastating storm past year, Trump tweeted that the official death toll was a political scheme, two days after he was sharply criticised for saying the government had an "unsung success" in its response to Maria.

"I can't really comment because I don't know anything about it", Hatch said outside of a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting to consider Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination.

Sen. Lindsey Graham of SC, who talks to Trump often, said, "I don't think it's bad to say we could have done better in Puerto Rico".

A photographer working for a Puerto Rican police agency posted photos online Tuesday that he said showed a stockpile of bottled water on a runway in the city of Ceiba that had gone unused for about a year. "But we will be there, and it's just a matter of time", he added.

U.S. Rep. Darren Soto, whose staffers held office hours at three central Florida hotels this week to assist evacuees, put the blame on President Donald Trump and a Republican-dominated Congress that did not pass supplemental disaster relief assistance.

"I thought you all wanted to talk about the Kavanaugh nomination", he said.

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The storms knocked out all of the Caribbean island's electricity. What the point, honestly?

"This is what denial following neglect looks like", declared San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz in response to Trump's tweets. If you're suggesting that every person who gets sick and dies months after a storm comes through because the infrastructure is inadequate, or medical supplies aren't available, or because they were bitten by a dog who might have been too hungry because he lost his owners in the storm, are directly attributable to the hurricane, then...

Puerto Rico's government, which is neither Republican nor Democratic, but run by the New Progressive party, a pro-statehood, Puerto Rico-only party, accepted the 2,975 number as a legitimate estimate of the storm's true toll.

"The team found that lack of communication, well-established guidelines and training for physicians on how to certify deaths in disasters resulted in a limited number of deaths being identified as hurricane-related", read the study.

'You know, 3,000, 6, 18, I don't know.

Florida Governor Rick Scott, who is now running for the US Senate, tweeted: "I've been to Puerto Rico 7 times & saw devastation firsthand".

"My teams knew about it but first they will say, "no we cannot use them, ' months later water was no good for human consumption", he tweeted".

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.