'People Are Dying!': San Juan Mayor Tears Into U.S. Official Who Called Puerto Rico 'A Good News Story'

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Millions of people in Puerto Rico are still without power, water, and gas, so the mayor of the island’s biggest city didn’t take kindly to a Trump administration official who painted projecting a sunny picture of how the relief effort is going.

In an interview on CNN Friday morning, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz slammed “irresponsible” remarks from Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke, who said Thursday that she’s “very satisfied” with the response to Hurricane Maria.

“I know it is really a good news story in terms of our ability to reach people and the limited number of deaths that have taken place in such a devastating hurricane,” Duke said.

Shown the clip on Friday’s New Day, Cruz was incredulous.

“Maybe from where she’s standing it’s a good news story,” she began. She continued (emphasis mine):

When you’re drinking from a creek it’s not a good news story. When you don’t have food for a baby, it’s not a good news story. When you have to pull people down from their buildings...I’m sorry. That really upsets me and frustrates me. I would ask her to come down here and visit the towns and then make a statement like that.

Dammit, this is not a good news story! This is a people are dying story. This is a life or death story. This is [a] there’s a truckload of stuff that cannot be taken to people story. This is a story of devastation that continues to worsen because people are not getting food and water. If I could scream a lot more louder—it is not a good news story when people are dying, when they don’t have dialysis, when their generators aren’t working and their oxygen isn’t providing for them. Where is the good news here?


Meanwhile, President Trump was on Twitter, cravenly suggesting that “big decisions” would have to be made in the rebuilding effort.


Heavy rains are in the forecast for Puerto Rico this weekend, along with a flash flood watch.



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