Trump's Puerto Rico visit faces criticism as he tosses paper towels

National Guard personnel clean up roads in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria

GUAYNABO (Puerto Rico) • US President Donald Trump has told Puerto Rico officials they should be "proud" that only 16 people died when Hurricane Maria hit their island, compared with the "thousands" killed in "a real catastrophe like Hurricane Katrina".

Trump "opened up the floor for discussion (during his visit) and she actually made zero comments", Sanders added.

Puerto Rico has a debt of $ 73 billion and this year it went bankrupt.

"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 happened here and what is your death count?"

"This bad and abominable view of him throwing paper towels and throwing provisions at people, it does not embody the spirit of the American nation", Cruz told MSNBC.

President Donald Trump "distributing relief items" in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Tuesday: "Trump Towels - guaranteed to clean up after any major disaster - hurricanes, floods, oil spills".

In an appearance on MSNBC Tuesday night following Trump's Puerto Rico stop, Cruz slammed the president's visit to the island as a public relations stunt, pointing out that "there was no exchange with anybody, with none of the mayors".




Trump also spent some time learning about water purification tablets, asking a local "Would you drink it?" and when she answered in the affirmative, added, "Really?" while looking dubiously at the package of tablets.

Cruz wore a t-shirt with the words, "Help us, we are dying" during an interview last week on CNN. The storm destroyed much of the island and left 60 percent without water and nearly the entire island without power. "And that's fine. We've saved a lot of lives", he told a gathering. You know, they owe a lot of money to your friends on Wall Street.

Mr Trump has been criticised for what many say has been a slow response to the island's crisis.

The US President began lobbing hurricane relief supplies into a sedate crowd of Puerto Ricans during today's visit.

During the meeting with officials, Trump thanked almost every other Puerto Rican leader and federal administrator for the work they'd done to aide Puerto Rico.

"Such poor leadership by the Mayor of San Juan and others in Puerto Rico who are not able to get their workers to help", Trump tweeted.

"Everyone around this table and everybody watching can really be very proud of what's been taking place in Puerto Rico".

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