The Latest: Trump says Puerto storm response ‘unappreciated’

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s view of the government’s response to hurricanes (all times local):

7:30 a.m.

President Donald Trump says the U.S. government is ready for Hurricane Florence and he’s rejecting criticism of the response to last year’s Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, where thousands of people died.

Trump tweeted Wednesday, “We got A Pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and did an unappreciated great job in Puerto Rico, even though an inaccessible island with very poor electricity and a totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan).”

He says, “We are ready for the big one that is coming!”

Florence is nearing the Carolina coast with powerful winds and drenching rain.

Trump calls the government’s response in Puerto Rico “successful” even though a federal report shows 2,975 people died.

San Juan’s mayor blames Trump for delays in getting supplies and money to the island.

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1:10 a.m.

President Donald Trump is calling the U.S. government’s response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico “incredibly successful” even though a recent federal report found that nearly 3,000 people died.

Trump said Tuesday during a briefing on a Category 4 hurricane approaching the Eastern Seaboard that last year’s hurricane in Puerto Rico was the “hardest one by far” because it happened on an island.

But his comments come weeks after Puerto Rico’s governor raised the U.S. territory’s official death toll from Hurricane Maria from 64 to 2,975.

Trump was asked about his administration’s handling of last year’s storm in Puerto Rico as the government prepares for the impact of Hurricane Florence.

Hurricane Maria hit on Sept. 20, 2017, and is estimated to have caused $100 billion in damage.

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For the latest on Hurricane Florence, visit apnews.com/tag/Hurricanes

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