Trump attacks Puerto Rico in Twitter tantrum

by | Oct 12, 2017 | General | Comments

Early morning today the President of the United States, Donald Trump, had one of his notorious Twitter tantrums, and this time, the focus of his attacks was hurricane-stricken Puerto Rico. In a series of tweets, Trump blamed Puerto Rico for its poor infrastructure, and indicated that he couldn’t keep the Federal Emergency Management Agency and first responders “in Puerto Rico forever.”

Trump also said “Puerto Rico survived the Hurricanes,” a disputable claim given that the US territory is struggling to restore power and water, and most of the central municipalities in the main island are still without reliable communication.

The tweets come as confirmation that Trump is fixated on Puerto Rico’s debt and financial crisis, seemingly blaming those factors for the current state of the territory, hurricanes notwithstanding.

The statement by the President indicates a failure of the strategy employed by the administration of Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló of praising the Trump response to the disaster, even in the face of evidence that the White House took a long time to coordinate its efforts, distracted then with a feud with sports players. Despite constant praise, Trump even used Rosselló’s words to back up his attack.

Rosselló responded to the tweets with a tweet of his own, later saying in a press conference that he was satisfied with the explanation given by the White House to him.

The governor seems unlikely to change his tune in regards to the White House, favoring non-confrontation regardless of how effective and attentive Trump is to the situation in Puerto Rico. Rosselló’s reaction however, was not shared with other local leaders. San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz (PDP), previously the target of another of Trump’s tantrums, called the comments unbecoming, and former governors Anibal Acevedo Vilá (PDP) and Alejandro García Padilla expressed their criticism of the tweets. Democrats in Congress also expressed their fury at the tweets, seeing them as a threat that help might be pulled out of Puerto Rico.