Trump: FEMA can't stay in Puerto Rico forever

President Trump on Thursday warned that this administration's response to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico cannot last "forever."

"We cannot keep [the Federal Emergency Management Agency], the Military & the First Responders, who have been amazing (under the most difficult circumstances) in P.R. forever!" Trump wrote in a series of tweets.

He added that the island territory's existing debt and infrastructure issues compounded problems.

His tweets come at a time when only about 10 percent of the island's 3.4 million residents have electricity, Puerto Rico's government said Tuesday. 

ADVERTISEMENT
Guaynabo, a city the president and first lady Melania Trump visited, is also reportedly still without power

“Flashlights, you don’t need them anymore. You don’t need them anymore,” the president said as he passed them out to city residents. 

He also tossed paper towels into the crowd of people gathered around him during the visit. 

The Trump administration faced criticism for its initial response as Puerto Rican lawmakers begged him to help deal with the scarcity of basic necessities like food and clean water.