Trump Announces $13 Billion for Puerto Rico to Rebuild from Hurricane Maria

Date: 2020-09-18 20:48:00

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President Donald Trump again touted progress on a coronavirus vaccine Friday, telling a news conference that as soon as a vaccine is approved, widespread distribution will begin “immediately.”

“Distribution will begin within 24 hours after notice,” Trump said, adding he expects to have enough vaccines available for every American by April.

Trump also announced the release Friday of nearly $13 billion to Puerto Rico to help rebuild the electrical grid and repair schools from the devastation of Hurricane Maria three years ago, amid criticism that the aid was overdue and was being released now only for political purposes.

The grant comes Trump, who has previously balked at providing assistance to the island territory, and former Vice President Joe Biden court voters in the crucial swing state of Florida. The state is home to large numbers of Puerto Ricans, including many who fled Hurricane Maria’s destruction.

Trump blamed the delay on Democrats in Congress who approved the funding and pushed for its release.

“I’m the best thing that ever happened to Puerto Rico, no one even close,” he said at a White House press conference.

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