San Juan Mayor Rejects Trump Admin Claim That Hurricane Response Is a “Good News” Story

“This is a people are dying story.”

In remarks to the press and on social media, President Donald Trump has offered a slew of self-congratulations on his administration’s response to the devastation in Puerto Rico.

On Thursday, acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke appeared to follow the president’s lead by saying she was “very satisfied” with federal relief efforts. She even went as far as to call the response a “good news story.” 

“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,” she told reporters.

That characterization did not sit well with San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz. CNN shared Duke’s comments with Cruz during a live segment on New Day Friday morning, and she looked stunned.

“Well, maybe from where she’s standing it’s a good news story,” Cruz said. “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.”

“I’m sorry but that really upsets me and frustrates me,” she added.

Cruz said Duke’s comments undermined the words of support she received from the White House: “Dammit this is not a good news story. This is a people are dying story.”

More MotherJones reporting on Climate Desk

One More Thing

And it's a big one. Mother Jones is launching a new Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on the corruption that is both the cause and result of the crisis in our democracy.

The more we thought about how Mother Jones can have the most impact right now, the more we realized that so many stories come down to corruption: People with wealth and power putting their interests first—and often getting away with it.

Our goal is to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We're aiming to create a reporting position dedicated to uncovering corruption, build a team, and let them investigate for a year—publishing our stories in a concerted window: a special issue of our magazine, video and podcast series, and a dedicated online portal so they don't get lost in the daily deluge of headlines and breaking news.

We want to go all in, and we've got seed funding to get started—but we're looking to raise $500,000 in donations this spring so we can go even bigger. You can read about why we think this project is what the moment demands and what we hope to accomplish—and if you like how it sounds, please help us go big with a tax-deductible donation today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate