Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) on Sunday expressed concern over the Trump administration's planned response to the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, while acknowledging the commitment and hard work being done by federal first responders.
“We are on the verge of failing Puerto Rico," Blumenthal said during a press call after he returned from surveying the damage on the U.S. territory.
"My fear is Americans are failing other Americans," he continued, adding that “one of the major failings in the federal responsibility is the failure to plan."
However, the Connecticut senator did praise the work being done by first responders, such as the Federal Emergency Management Administrator (FEMA).
“I’ve been enormously impressed with the dedication and diligence of the people with FEMA," Blumenthal said on the call.
“They’re working heart and soul, everyone needs to pull together and put aside partisan differences," he continued.
The senator has been critical of President Trump's response to the disaster in recent days.
"No, what’s “out of whack” is leaving millions of American citizens without power, clean water, or fuel for two weeks," Blumenthal tweeted after the president lambasted Puerto Rico's debt in the midst of the recovery, saying the island was “throwing our budget out of whack."
No, what’s “out of whack” is leaving millions of American citizens without power, clean water, or fuel for two weeks. https://t.co/optyVTpxI5— Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) October 3, 2017
Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico last month, leaving virtually the entire island without power.
Critics blamed the federal government after aid such as food and water was slow to reach people on the island.