Senator Marco Rubio penned a letter to President Trump, and in the letter he discusses his disagreement with the President on Trump’s contention that the number of deaths being reported as a result of Hurricane Maria was inflated.This letter comes at a time marking the one year anniversary of the event.
In the letter, Senator Rubio comments that “Today marks one year since Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, before ravaging the island and contributing to the deaths of an estimated 2,975 people. This moment provides an important opportunity to recognize the resiliency that our fellow Americans in Puerto Rico demonstrated in the wake of this unprecedented disaster, as well as the hardships they continue to face one year later. As such, I urge your administration to renew its commitment to ensuring the long-term stability of those impacted by Hurricane Maria.”
He adds that “While some progress has been made, the island still faces significant challenges to recovery. Thus, I write to ensure the federal government has learned from our mistakes and to reiterate the continued need for federal support for Puerto Rico. The impact of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico was severe. The storm left Puerto Rico’s electric, water, telecommunication, and transportation systems completely decimated. This resulted in a disaster that the federal and local governments were not adequately prepared to respond to. While federal resources were stretched across four major disasters, and the distance to Puerto Rico created logistical challenges that impeded the deployment of federal resources, mistakes were made and we must ensure they are not repeated.”
Senator Rubio concluded the letter, saying that “Even after a year, it is clear that Puerto Rico is still in the very early stages of the recovery process. Electricity on the island was completely restored to the entire island just last month. An estimated 166,000 homes remain in need of repair or reconstruction and thousands of families displaced by the storm remain on the mainland as their homes are not habitable. There is no doubt that Puerto Ricans continue to face adversity as they rebuild their lives after the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria, and it is critical that the federal government remains committed to supporting our fellow Americans as they continue the recovery process.”