US president Donald Trump on Tuesday addressed criticism that he had not paid the proper amount of attention to the ongoing crisis in Puerto Rico, saying it was a much more difficult situation to handle than one in Florida or Texas because it was “in the ocean.”
“It’s the most difficult job because it’s on the island, it’s on an island in the middle of the ocean,” Trump said at a joint press conference with Spain’s prime minister, Mariano Rajoy. “It’s out in the ocean — you can’t just drive your trucks there from other states.”
Puerto Rico was ravaged this month by a recent pair of massive hurricanes, which knocked out power on the island and caused widespread destruction. Trump has received substantial criticism for appearing to focus more on issues such as NFL players protesting during the national anthem at games than on the response to the Puerto Rican crisis.
Trump touted the US’s response, repeatedly saying Puerto Rico’s governor had assured him the government was doing well in its efforts.
“This isn’t like Florida where we can go up the spine. This isn’t like Texas where we go right down the middle and we distribute,” Trump said. “This is a thing called the Atlantic Ocean. This is tough stuff.”
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