Trump Challenges His Critics on Puerto Rico Death Stats, They Push Back Hard

Several Thursday morning tweets from President Donald Trump challenging death count estimates in Puerto Rico attributed to Hurricane Maria last year have set off a social media firestorm — which continues to this moment.

The president denied that 3,000 people perished in the storms that recently devastated the tiny island.

He was referencing the events in Puerto Rico of last September and beyond.

3000 people did not die in the two hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico. When I left the Island, AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths. As time went by it did not go up by much. Then, a long time later, they started to report really large numbers, like 3000…

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 13, 2018

…..This was done by the Democrats in order to make me look as bad as possible when I was successfully raising Billions of Dollars to help rebuild Puerto Rico. If a person died for any reason, like old age, just add them onto the list. Bad politics. I love Puerto Rico!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 13, 2018

Researchers at George Washington University (GWU) in Washington, D.C., concluded that 2,975 “excess deaths” were linked to Hurricane Maria in a report published just two weeks ago.

The independent report published by the school’s Milken Institute of Public Health tallied casualties that occurred due to Hurricane Maria between September 2017 and February 2018.

The study was commissioned by the Puerto Rican government.

Per Trump’s tweet, the number of deaths when he left the island following the storm was between six and 18.

Further, he indicated in Thursday’s tweets that the toll did not rise significantly until “a long time later.”

GWU’s numbers place that initial toll a bit higher than Trump did, at 64 — noting that the number was reported by the government of Puerto Rico in September and soon after.

“The team found that lack of communication, well-established guidelines and training for physicians on how to certify deaths in disasters resulted in a limited number of deaths being identified as hurricane related,” according to the study.

Trump attributed what he claims are inflated death toll numbers to “Democrats” whom he says are trying to “make me look as bad as possible.”

He said that people were included in the death toll accounting who had died “for any reason, like old age, just to add them to the list.”

He added that the

Source:: LifeZette

      

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