President Donald Trump visited Puerto Rico todayto see first-hand the island’s humanitarian crisis. A number of top officials joined the president for Tuesday’s trip, including Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González-Colón, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, Small Business administrator Linda McMahon, Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert, budget director Mick Mulvaney, and Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly.
The President, throughout the day, made a number of statements:
“And I was going to be here a week ago, if you remember, and that was the day of the hurricane. That was the day of the second hurricane.”
“The first thing is that before we were hit by Maria, we were hit by Hurricane Irma. And during that time, before the hurricane, here was FEMA, acting together with a lot of employees. More than 4,000 people were here in the islands from the different… …from the different branches of the military — HHS, Navy, the Army, FEMA, and all the staff — working together before the hurricane hit. They were here before, during, after the first hurricane, and they continued to stay on the island, boots on the ground, during Maria; same thing.”
“And we are in the path of the hurricane, so we are used to receiving hurricanes, but never before a Category 5. Amount of devastation — it’s unheard of.”
“I also want to thank your congresswoman. … Congresswoman Jenniffer González Colón, who I have watched the other day and she was saying such nice things about all of the people that worked so hard. Jennifer, do you think you can say a little bit about what you said about us today? It’s not about me; it is about the incredible people from the military to FEMA to first responders.”
“The whole team has been amazing. Your governor, has been — who I didn’t know and heard very good things about him. He is not even from my party and he started right at the beginning appreciating what we did. … Right from the beginning this governor did not play politics.”
““I hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, but you’ve thrown our budget a little out of whack because we spent a lot of money on Puerto Rico, and that’s fine. We saved a lot of lives.”
“Every death is a horror, but if you look at a real catastrophe like Katrina and you look at the tremendous hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people that died and you look at what at what happened here with really a storm that was just totally overpowering … 16 versus literally thousands of people. You can be very proud. Everyone around this table and everyone watching can really be very proud of what’s taking place in Puerto Rico.”
The President went on to visit several areas around Puerto Rico that were affected by the Hurricane and interacted with some Puerto Ricans.