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Bernie Sanders: Racism A Factor In Trump’s Response To Puerto Rico

“It is unspeakable” for President Trump to lash out at a Puerto Rican official for begging the government to help the U.S. territory recover from recent hurricanes, according to Sen. Bernie Sanders.

On Sunday, the independent lawmaker from Vermont blasted Trump’s tweets ridiculing Carmen Yulin Cruz, the top official in Puerto Rico’s capital city. Sanders accused the president of “speaking from his fancy golf club, playing golf with his billionaire friends, attacking the mayor of San Juan, who is struggling to bring electricity to the island, food to the island, water to the island, gas to the island.”

When asked by CNN host Jake Tapper whether Trump’s response to the crisis has been racially motivated, Sanders replied: “Given the president’s history on race; given the fact that he, a few months ago, told us that there were good people on both sides when neo-Nazis were marching in Charlottesville, yeah, I think we have a right to be suspect that he is treating the people of Puerto Rico in a different way than he has treated the people of Texas or Florida.”

A prominent Republican, Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, also slammed Trump’s derogatory comments about Yulin Cruz. “It’s not appropriate," he said on CNN. “When people are in the middle of a disaster, you don’t start trying to criticize them. I don’t know what to say.”

Yulín Cruz has made impassioned pleas for assistance on several news networks. She claimed the emergency response had been inadequate, pointing out that most Puerto Ricans had lost access to electricity, water and other essential services. The mayor said on ABC’s “This Week” that although White House homeland security adviser Tom Bossert had contacted her, an insufficient amount of supplies were being delivered.

In some of his Twitter messages, the president mentioned that Puerto Rico was already mired in an economic mess before the storms struck. He warned that rebuilding the island’s infrastructure and homes will be extremely expensive. Yulin Cruz shot back: “Let us not talk about the debt. Let us not talk about the cost of reconstruction. Let us just talk about saving lives right now.”

According to Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, “it’s unfair to say we haven’t done everything we can because we have done everything that we can and will continue to do so.” He added: “It’s unfortunate that the … San Juan mayor wants to sort of go against the grain. We’d love to have her on the team, as well. … Judge us by the actions, please. Judge us by what’s happening on the island.”

Republican Puerto Rico Rep. Jennifer González-Colón told CNN: “This is not the time for politics, to have people from different parties blaming one another. I can tell you that the president has called me twice, actually, asking me directly how he can help, what can be improved, how many more resources or people we need. He just approved $40 million for highways, to repair highways and rebuild highways on the island. He just sent a lot of new beds for the hospitals, working with the generators, and nothing is perfect because we have been hit a catastrophic hurricane.”

Source: CNN, Newsmax
Photo: YouTube

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