Trump's hurricane failures could cost him Florida in 2020
Donald Trump throws rolls of paper towels to survivors of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico (Screen capture)

President Donald Trump's response to the first major disaster of his presidency may wind up costing him a second term.


Many Puerto Ricans who fled the U.S. territory for Florida remain angry at Trump over the federal government's response to Hurricane Maria in 2017, and they're eager to vote him out of office in November, reported The Guardian.

“He could have done more for Puerto Rico,” said Marta Rivera, a politically active voter back home in Puerto Rico. “He didn’t do anything because he didn’t want to.”

Rivera is among tens of thousands of refugees who moved to Florida after the hurricane devastated Puerto Rico, and she's now the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit calling on the state to provide bilingual ballots and pollworkers for Spanish speakers under the Voting Rights Act.

Puerto Ricans can only vote in presidential primaries in their home territory, but in Florida they can participate in the general election -- and their participation could help flip a state Trump won by only about 11,300 votes.

“If Democrats want to win, they have to drive Hispanic turnout, specifically Puerto Rican and non-Cuban voters,” said Daniel A Smith, a political science professor at the University of Florida.

More than 130,000 refugees may have resettled in Florida after the hurricane, and their participation could be key to this year's presidential election.

“Honestly I just want them to remember us," said Mario Rosa, who fled Puerto Rico after the hurricane, "just to remember we exist."