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Trump only approved 75 out of 2000 requests for funeral assistance for Puerto Rico — then called it an ‘unsung success’

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President Donald Trump said relief efforts to Hurricane Maria in Purto Rico were successful even though his administration failed to help thousands of people.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) approved 75 out of 2000 requests for funeral assistance after Hurricane Maria hit, according to a report from Buzzfeed news.

FEMA officials noted that they were unable to provide further assistance because victims lack proper death certificates due to the governments not counting the deceased.

Even after the death toll increased, individual families were not able to receive a death certificate because individuals deaths were not accounted for.

“It should be a gut punch to all of us that thousands of our fellow U.S. citizens died due to Hurricane Maria and its aftermath. For months, I’ve pushed the Trump Administration about its role in, and acceptance of, an inaccurate fatality count,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren told BuzzFeed News.

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She added, “We need to know how the Administration has updated its disaster planning in response to the new death toll and ensure that grieving Puerto Rican families receive long-awaited federal funeral assistance.”

The funeral assistance would have helped families pay for caskets, mortuary services, burial plots, and cremations.

FEMA director Brock Long said it was not the agencies responsibility to count the dead. “The determination of cause and manner of death is the sole responsibility of the state or territory’s cause-of-death certifier,” Long wrote in a letter to Democrats.

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“The Trump administration utterly failed the people of Puerto Rico, and we have to make sure what happened there never happens again. We’re in the midst of a potentially devastating hurricane season, and FEMA needs accurate statistics to deal with upcoming crises,” Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ 3rd District) said.


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Trump picks Antonin Scalia’s son to replace disgraced former Labor Secretary: report

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On Thursday, NPR reported that President Donald Trump is naming Eugene Scalia, the son of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, to take over as Secretary of Labor.

Scalia, who served on the court from 1986 to his death in 2016, was known as one of the staunchest conservatives on the bench. His seat was deliberately kept vacant by Republicans for over a year to deny President Barack Obama the ability to make an appointment to it.

The Department of Labor was until this month run by former federal prosecutor Alexander Acosta, who resigned in disgrace amid renewed questions about his role in brokering a potentially illegal sweetheart plea agreement with hedge fund manager and accused child sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.

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DOJ policy blocking Trump from being indicted ‘factored into’ the end of the Stormy Daniels case: report

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Federal prosecutors decided to close the investigation into the 2016 criminal hush money payment to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal that benefitted the Trump campaign because, in part, of the policy that prevents the indictment of a sitting president, according to a new report from USA Today citing an anonymous source.

Michael Cohen has already pleaded guilty to the violation of campaign finance law. He said that he carried out the effort in coordination with and at the direction of then-candidate Donald Trump in order to increase his chances of victory in the 2016 presidential election.

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Trump’s Pentagon spokeswoman forced staff to run errands — and even help her adopt a foster child: report

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On Thursday, the Department of Defense Inspector General released a scathing report on ex-Pentagon spokesperson Dana White, the result of an investigation that began last year following ethics complaints from her staff.

The IG concluded that White used federal staffers to help her run personal errands both during and outside of work hours. Officials were forced to book her personal travel, deliver lunch and snacks to her office, act as her chauffeur, handle her dry cleaning, and book a makeup artist to come to her house.

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