“You’re seeing folks from FEMA who are there nine days later assessing the situation where there are already some pretty obvious needs as they go into these areas,” said CNN’s Brianna Keilar Friday. She explained that when FEMA landed in Puerto Rico they were there to “assess” the island’s problems. They didn’t bring any supplies. The only delivery that was made was a satellite phone to the Governor, so he could reach Washington. She was shocked it took nine days just to get him a phone. “It sort of defies belief,” she said.
“FEMA and the Department of Defense actually has a lot of authority right now,” Gallego explained. “The problem is the Trump administration just dropped the ball 100 percent. They did not properly plan for what was going to happen after the hurricane. And every excuse I’ve heard so far has been nothing short of really almost criminal.”
He went on to say that he was on the phone with NorthCom and they explained they were sending things to the island. Gallego asked if they had water filtration and “they do not know where they were going or if they had been requested by FEMA.” He then got on the phone with FEMA director William B. “Brock” Long, who said the reason they can’t get supplies in are due to the lack of truck drivers.
“We have a whole continent here on the mainland full of Teamsters in the United States who have volunteered to go down and drive the goods out there,” Gallego said.
He went on to call the response rate “absolutely disgraceful.”
“You know what are the necessities of the island, if you’re going to wait for the red tape to be cleared, people are going to die,” he continued. “This is not the time for that. And if the president actually cared about it, he would step off the golf course, that he is going to be on this weekend, and actually fully put pressure down on FEMA, Department of Homeland Security, as well as DOD to make sure that all the assets are necessary and on the island to stabilize the island. This is getting bad. People are running out of insulin. There’s no running water on many parts of the island. There are still isolated villages. This is an island that is only two hours away from most of the mainland United States. These are 3.5 million American citizens that we have abandoned. We should be ashamed of ourselves. This is absolutely not acceptable.”
Watch the full interview below: