Trump Denies Revised Death Toll in Puerto Rico...Cue the Outrage

Nicholas Kamm  AFP  Getty Images

Nicholas Kamm AFP Getty Images

TRUMP DISPUTES 3,000 DEATHS IN PUERTO RICO: The president disputed the revised number of excess deaths following Hurricane Maria, and suggested Democrats released exaggerated numbers "to make me look as bad as possible"- the co-hosts weigh in. "It was just such a powerful storm", the congressman said, adding that he believes Trump "has been, I think, overly criticized for his response".

In fact, there are two categories of disaster deaths.

"We will never apologize for erring on the side of having too much of a commodity in a place, because that's what we're supposed to do", he said. "When I left the Island, AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths", he tweeted.

'You have people who died after the storm passed because they fell off their roof making repairs, they died in vehicle crashes because the stoplights were off, you have chainsaw accidents, you have accidents with people cleaning up debris, ' he said. The university issued a statement Thursday, saying it stood by that study. The midpoint estimate - 2,975 deaths - has been accepted by the government of Puerto Rico as the official death toll.

"We are scientists. We are public health people".

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A team of researchers at Harvard University announced in May that they believed Hurricane Maria's death toll was 4,600.

The president defended the federal government's "fantastic job" in Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rican Gov. Ricardo Rosselló admitted the government made mistakes handling the storm but he insisted it was not due to political considerations.

She said at the time that back-to-back hurricanes a year ago prompted "the largest domestic disaster response mission in history". It took more than 11 months, for example, to fully restore electricity.

Trump maintained as recently as Tuesday that his response to the storm was an "incredible unsung success".

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No one suggests that Trump was primarily responsible for the deaths in Puerto Rico.

Trump bristled at criticism of his administration's handling of the Puerto Rico disaster as Hurricane Florence approached the coast of North Carolina with heavy rains that forecasters warned would cause catastrophic flooding across a wide swath of the USA southeast.

Puerto Rico's government-led by a governor with the island's pro-statehood party who is also a Democrat-faced criticism for almost a year after the hurricane that it drastically undercounted the number of fatalities caused by Maria.

That assessment brought sharp rebukes from officials in Puerto Rico and congressional Democrats.

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