Trump Is Still Bragging About the Government’s Handling of a Hurricane That Killed More Than 4,600 Americans

Chris Kleponis/ZUMA

President Donald Trump has yet to comment on a devastating new study published by Harvard researchers this week estimating that 4,645 people died in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria—more than 72 times what the Trump administration has officially acknowledged. The new death toll marks what may be the country’s deadliest natural disaster in 100 years.

But while Trump remains silent on the study, he’s still bragging about the government’s response. 

“Last season during the hurricanes—I was in Texas, I was in Florida, I was in Puerto Rico—I saw the work you did under the most adverse conditions,” Trump said at the change-of-command ceremony for the US Coast Guard on Friday. “I’ve said this to a lot of people: I don’t think any brand has gained more momentum or has gained more of anything than the brand of the United States Coast Guard.”

As my colleague Tim Murphy noted earlier this week, during the hurricane and its aftermath, Trump vacillated between blaming Puerto Rico for an “impossible situation” and demanding that the media shower praise on his emergency response efforts.


We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend


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.


Support our journalism

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


Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.