←  Political Discussion

Talk Radio Sucks -- Smart Politics


Update on Puerto Rico

LFC's Photo LFC 12 February 2019 - 02:39 PM

Water rationing is occurring in parts of Puerto Rico because the a damaged still hasn't been repaired. Heckuva' job, Trump!


Tens of thousands of people in Puerto Rico will face water rationing due to increasingly dry conditions in a U.S. territory still struggling to recover from Hurricane Maria.

Gov. Ricardo Rossello said Monday that seven municipalities in the island’s northwest region could be without water for up to 24 hours at a time starting next week.

Federal officials say 76 percent of Puerto Rico is experiencing abnormally dry conditions and another 8 percent is in a moderate drought. They say some 220,000 people are experiencing a drought.

Those affected by the water restrictions depend on the Guajataca reservoir, which was damaged by the Category 4 hurricane that hit in September 2017. Officials say improvements to the reservoir will be completed by May and include increased capacity for water storage.

baw1064's Photo baw1064 12 February 2019 - 03:22 PM

I'm guessing that someone in Trump's cabinet will suggest that they just get a bottle from the Fiji Water Girl.

LFC's Photo LFC 01 April 2019 - 12:24 PM

Looks like there's going to be a showdown in Congress over Trump wanting to punish Puerto Rico for not worshipping his obvious greatness and the Republican Party's never ending ability to engage in Trumpsucking. And once again Republicans do everything in their power to turn Hispanics away from them for generations.


A fight between President Donald Trump and Democrats over hurricane relief for Puerto Rico is imperiling a widely backed disaster aid bill that is a top priority for some of Trump’s Southern GOP allies.

The amount of money in dispute is relatively small, but Trump feels antipathy toward the U.S. territory’s government and Senate Republicans are taking a hard line — for now — in denying Democratic demands for more aid for Puerto Rico, which was devastated by back-to-back hurricanes in 2017.

Democrats are threatening to block the GOP bill in a showdown Senate vote on Monday afternoon. What would happen next is unclear, but top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer of New York appears confident that a successful filibuster won’t kill the bill outright, but instead drive Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell toward compromise.

The $13.5 billion Senate measure mostly mirrors a $14.2 billion measure passed by the House in January, combining aid to Southern farmers, California communities devastated by last summer’s wildfire, and rebuilding help for hurricane-hit states such as Florida, Georgia and North Carolina.

Democrats want to add almost $700 million more to unlock further disaster aid for Puerto Rico and several states and to help them rebuild badly damaged water systems. Democrats are also seeking language to force the administration to release billions of dollars in rebuilding funds that have already been approved.

McConnell, R-Ky., however, has maneuvered to shut off any opportunity for Democrats to amend the bill.

“I think that’s a mistake. I think we have a good package that the House would accept. If we could bring it onto the floor and have a vote on it I think it would pass,” said Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont, the Democrats’ point man on the legislation. “These are Americans who are suffering. I think we ought to be able to come together on it. So I think it’s unfortunate to have just a take-it-or-leave-it bill.”

The parliamentary setup, however, is complicated and gives Democrats some advantages. And the political momentum for the measure — strongly backed by Trump’s allies in Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina, among other states — has only been heightened by the outbreak of massive flooding in Midwestern states such as Iowa and Nebraska.

Trump has yet to veto a spending bill despite some tough talk and he has signed off on $600 million to ease food stamp cuts in Puerto Rico. But he poor-mouthed the island’s government at a meeting with Senate Republicans last week and suggested Puerto Rico has gotten too much disaster help compared with states such as Texas.

LFC's Photo LFC 01 April 2019 - 03:35 PM

Response to the hurricanes in Puerto Rico is dubbed "Trump's Katrina." Meanwhile the administration is stonewalling the attempts of House Dems to investigate exactly what happened during the response. Maybe they can start with how a 2 person company that barely existed or had ever done anything (but just happened to be from Ryan Zinke's home town) was handed the job of repairing and rebuilding the entire electrical grid.


It was arguably the biggest scandal and outrage of Donald Trump’s young, already scandal-ridden presidency.

There was a large American body count piling up, along with mounting reports and questions about the administration’s mismanagement of the relief efforts, with few answers forthcoming. With the bodies barely cold, the president instead launched sustained, petty public-relations warfare against politicians who he felt had crossed him and, at times, appeared to go to war with the victims of the storms.

It was “Trump’s Katrina,” and then some.

Now, a year and a half after hurricanes Irma and María ravaged Puerto Rico, the island is grappling with a whole new round of crises, Trump has been telling his GOP allies that Puerto Rico is receiving too much assistance from the federal government, and lawmakers leading an investigation into what happened after the storms are being stalled.

Some Democratic lawmakers are all but accusing the Trump administration of stonewalling them in their inquiries.

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA), who chairs the House Oversight Committee’s subcommittee on government operations, told The Daily Beast he still hasn’t seen key documents from the administration detailing its response to the hurricanes. He said the committee should be prepared to use its subpoena power to obtain those documents—and, if necessary, to hold officials in contempt of Congress if they don’t comply.

“This is not an academic exercise,” said Connolly. “People lost their lives.”

At a lunch Tuesday with Republican senators, Trump once again revived his complaints about the disaster aid spent on the U.S. territory, according to The Washington Post. The president reportedly complained that too much money had been given to the island, compared to what South Carolina and Texas had gotten, following their respective hurricane damage.

The remarks came as Democratic lawmakers are accusing Trump and his administration of dragging their feet on recovery funding, and as the Post reported that the devastated island is facing a food-stamp crisis.

Of course, none of that stopped the president from insisting to White House reporters on Thursday, “I’ve taken better care of Puerto Rico than any man ever,” just as he was getting ready to fly off to a political rally in Michigan.

The disaster and its aftermath left nearly 3,000 people dead, and the island is still struggling to recover nearly two years later.

Trump, however, has tripled down on blaming others and insisting that, somehow, everything he and his officials had done was perfect. A senior Trump administration official who has discussed Puerto Rico with the president said that in conversations on the topic, Trump has shown he feels he “has nothing to apologize” for and is far more likely to insult Democratic politicians for, in his view, trying to use the disaster and high death toll to make him look bad, than to to talk about ways to ameliorate suffering on the U.S. territory.

“He’s still clearly very bitter and sensitive about it,” the senior official noted.

When it comes to Trump the buck never stops there ... unless it's an actual buck. Then it stops whether it's his or not.

LFC's Photo LFC 02 April 2019 - 09:41 AM

Senate Democrats stick up for Puerto Rico.


Senate Democrats on Monday blocked a Republican disaster aid bill, saying it doesn’t do enough to help hurricane-torn Puerto Rico. The move tossed long-sought relief for victims of hurricanes, floods and western wildfires into limbo.

The vote escalated a fight between Democrats and President Donald Trump, who opposes further rebuilding aid for the U.S. island territory, which was slammed by back-to-back hurricanes in 2017.

The 44-49 vote fell short of a majority, much less the 60 votes required to overcome a Democratic filibuster. It sent GOP leaders back to the drawing board but seemed unlikely to kill disaster aid efforts outright, since there is much political support to send aid to Southern farmers, wildfire-ravaged California towns and Midwestern flood victims.

LFC's Photo LFC 02 April 2019 - 09:44 AM

TPM sums up the problem with a piece called Trump Went to Bed Mad at Puerto Rico and Woke Up Mad at Puerto Rico. He's a f***ing child and a nasty, cruel, spoiled, angry, insecure child at that.


President Trump can’t stop tweeting his angst about Puerto Rico and the money the federal government spent on the island’s hurricane relief efforts after it was devastated — and nearly 3,000 were killed — by Hurricane Maria last year.

Trump’s response to the catastrophic damage in Puerto Rico has been criticized from the start, when he raised the island’s debt to the federal government when talking about disaster relief efforts (and flung paper towels at survivors). After Republicans leaked to the press that Trump was whining last week about the amount of relief funds the government has given the island, Puerto Rico’s governor shot back with a scathing statement, reminding Trump that Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens.

In a string of tweets that started just before 11 p.m. EST on Monday night and reignited after 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, Trump berated the U.S. territory’s leadership, whom he described as “crazed” “incompetent and corrupt” and suggested that he was the “best thing that ever happened” to the island.

Beelzebuddy's Photo Beelzebuddy 02 April 2019 - 10:11 AM


described as “crazed” “incompetent and corrupt”
Posted Image

LFC's Photo LFC 02 April 2019 - 01:42 PM

The lying spokesperson for Trump (Yeah, I know it doesn't narrow it down much.) gets his ass handed to him with real-time fact checking. What a tool.


NBC News’ Hallie Jackson fact-checked White House spokesperson Hogan Gidley in real time after Gidley repeated President Donald Trump’s falsehoods regarding Puerto Rico. Gidley also twice incorrectly called the U.S. territory “that country,” which he later said was “a slip of the tongue.”

In an interview Tuesday morning with Jackson, Gidley attempted to defend President Donald Trump’s tweeted attacks at Puerto Rico, where nearly 3,000 people died as a result of Hurricane Maria’s landfall in 2017, and where the Trump administration is widely blamed for bungling disaster response after the catastrophic storm.

On Monday, a disaster relief bill stalled in the Senate due to a disagreement over the amount in food stamp and other aid that ought to be allocated to the U.S. territory.

“They have received more money than any state or territory in history for rebuild,” Gidley asserted confidently, adding: “They have not come to $91 billion, with all we’ve done in that country, where they have had a systematic mismanagement of the goods and services we’ve sent to them.”

Jackson jumped in, correcting the White House spokesperson on three fronts. “These are things that are not true, just factually, from a factual basis,” she said.

First, the “$91 billion” Gidley and Trump cited doesn’t represent what’s been spent on recovery in Puerto Rico, but rather the Trump administration’s high-end estimate of what recovery on the island could cost in the long run, The Washington Post reported. The territory has only actually received about $11 billion in aide.

Second, even if Puerto Rico receives $91 billion in federal assistance over the lifetime of the Hurricane Maria recovery — which will take many more years — that still won’t come close to the estimated $120 billion federal bill for the recovery after Hurricane Katina.

Finally, Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens who live in a U.S. territory. Gidley said later in the interview that it was “a mistake” to refer to the island as “that country.”

“Do you think that’s a concern that there is that kind of slip of the tongue inside the White House?” Jackson asked.

“No,” Gidley replied. “A slip of the tongue is not on purpose, Hallie, that would by definition be a slip of the tongue.”

golden_valley's Photo golden_valley 02 April 2019 - 02:31 PM

 LFC, on 02 April 2019 - 01:42 PM, said:

The lying spokesperson for Trump (Yeah, I know it doesn't narrow it down much.) gets his ass handed to him with real-time fact checking. What a tool.

Gidley said later in the interview that it was “a mistake” to refer to the island as “that country.”

“Do you think that’s a concern that there is that kind of slip of the tongue inside the White House?” Jackson asked.

“No,” Gidley replied. “A slip of the tongue is not on purpose, Hallie, that would by definition be a slip of the tongue.”

The interviewer should have said Freudian slip because it certainly was that. Trump is a product of his time and Puerto Ricans were go to bad guys in parts of NYC. He and his father probably didn't rent to them either.

pnwguy's Photo pnwguy 02 April 2019 - 02:40 PM

 golden_valley, on 02 April 2019 - 02:31 PM, said:

The interviewer should have said Freudian slip because it certainly was that. Trump is a product of his time and Puerto Ricans were go to bad guys in parts of NYC. He and his father probably didn't rent to them either.
Everyone of them carries switch blades.

Fred taught them "One of your own kind. Stick to your own kind"

Although foreign trophy women 9 or higher are OK.

LFC's Photo LFC 03 June 2019 - 12:20 PM

Another story of fraud in the Trump era.


The owners of the Textile Corporation of America promised the government that they could deliver 1,000 new jobs to residents of Pikeville, Tennessee, and millions of dollars of supplies to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico. And federal and state leaders lined up to support them, helping them secure millions of dollars in contracts and grants.

But two years later, the company is the subject of a federal criminal investigation alleging that its executives bilked taxpayers out of those millions.

According to affidavits filed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in a federal court in Tennessee in October and February, the Textile Corporation of America (TCA) fabricated evidence of work performed at a Pikeville, Tennessee, textile plant in order to draw grants from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)—a federally owned corporation—and the state’s Department of Economic and Community Development.

The FBI alleges that the company’s owners pocketed much of that money for personal use.

But more than a million dollars of the grant money, investigators say, went towards the purchase of tarps to fulfill a $30 million Federal Emergency Management Agency hurricane relief contract. The TCA sister company to which FEMA awarded that contract, Master Group USA (MGUSA), used more fraudulent paperwork, including fabricated copies of invoices and wire transfers, to conceal the fact that it was purchasing those tarps from China, in violation of federal sourcing laws, the FBI alleges. FEMA awarded MGUSA nearly $4 million before canceling the contract, after the tarps failed to meet quality requirements.

Huh. I wonder who got paid off. Grifters gonna' grift.


No criminal charges have yet been filed, and the Justice Department declined to comment. But the allegations against the Sadruddin brothers go beyond a typical case of procurement fraud, given the roster of high-profile politicians who lent their support to their companies over the past two years.

The Sadruddin brothers, and the family members allegedly party to the scheme, did not respond to requests for comment on the investigation. Nor did Troy King, the former attorney general of Alabama and TCA’s chief counsel.

King was one of a number of high-profile public figures who lined up to support TCA’s plans to buy, renovate, and revitalize the Pikeville textile plant. At an unveiling ceremony in July 2017, King, flanked by then-Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam ( R ) and an aide to Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN), said the project “represents the renaissance of America, the return of America as a global manufacturing center.”

“This is a great story,” DesJarlais said of the project. “A local entrepreneur made an investment in his community.”

“Textile Corporation of America’s commitment to create 1,000 jobs in Bledsoe County, a Tier 4 Distressed county, will have an incredible impact on the community and surrounding area,” promised Haslam. “We appreciate the company’s investment in our state and look forward to building a lasting partnership in the future.”

As of early this year, no work had been done at the site, and its gates had been padlocked.

Lots more detail in the article on how scammy these scumbags were.

LFC's Photo LFC 23 December 2019 - 10:09 PM

Trump attacks Puerto Rico once again with his sick brand of racism and personal vengeance for perceived slights. Meanwhile Evangelicals love him.


President Trump personally jumped in during budget negotiations to cut the amount of Medicaid funding for Puerto Rico, according to a Politico report.

Congressional negotiators unveiled an budget deal earlier this week allocating $5.7 billion over two years to fund public health insurance on the island, instead of $12 billion over four years. There had been a previous bipartisan agreement on the increased figures that would cover 1.4 million low-income Puerto Ricans — almost half its population.

But three sources told the outlet that Trump didn't back the deal because he believed it was too much and pushed to reduce the total amount. Lawmakers then revised the provision and whittled it down to two years with less money.

A White House spokesperson characterized the cut to Politico as "a win for President Trump and the American people" — even though Puerto Ricans are US citizens as well.

Trump has fixated on Puerto Rico throughout his presidency, calling it "one of the most corrupt places on Earth" and attacking officials there as "incompetent."

LFC's Photo LFC 13 January 2020 - 01:22 PM

After a brutal series of earthquakes the shithole nation of Puerto Rico which is full of brown people is pretty much left on its own. It's not like they're really part of country. Imagine the money that Trump would be screeching for if this was Alabama.


Squinting at the blistering sun, Jeanette Fontánez looks overheated and exasperated. “We can’t live in our houses because they’re cracked,” she tells The Daily Beast. “We need soap, mattresses, tents, water, supplies—a little bit of everything, because there’s a lot of us here.”

But as of Saturday afternoon, government officials and agencies had yet to arrive to where the 49-year-old Fontánez has sought refuge: In a public park within walking distance from her home, which she says is unsafe to be inside.

“We’ve been here since Tuesday,” says Fontánez, who was there with her 9-year-old daughter. Families are spread throughout the park, some set up near parked cars, other stationed under tarps.

Fontánez is one of an estimated 2,000 Puerto Ricans displaced by an unrelenting streak of earthquakes in the island’s southern region beginning Dec. 28 and culminating, at least so far, in Tuesday’s 6.4 magnitude event, followed by subsequent tremblors and then, on Sunday morning, an unexpected jump to 5.9. Electrical outages are widespread in the area. Some residents are also without water service.

Many families are living within sight of their rattled homes without stepping inside, much less sleeping in them. The constant shaking has compounded fears of being indoors even for those whose houses bear no noticeable ruptures. And the recently restored electricity departed again with Sunday morning’s quake.

Saturday, an LGBT-led caravan of volunteers arrived to serve meals and hand out water, sanitary wipes, diapers, and other supplies. It was only the second time donations were disbursed at the park, Fontánez says.

The supplies they have received may have been surplus items from well stocked shelters being supplied by Puerto Rican authorities, politicians, NGOs, and other groups. But little of that is so far making its way to smaller encampments, like the one in La Luna, says Fontánez.

D. C. Sessions's Photo D. C. Sessions 13 January 2020 - 02:19 PM

I got a plea yesterday from Médecins Sans Frontières -- for Puerto Rico.

What does it say that part of the USA has to be treated as an international medical emergency?

LFC's Photo LFC 13 January 2020 - 04:55 PM

 D. C. Sessions, on 13 January 2020 - 02:19 PM, said:

What does it say that part of the USA has to be treated as an international medical emergency?

It says that the political party that currently holds the presidency hates brown people, especially if they speak Spanish. Of course that party has been effectively saying the same thing for years.