Donald Trump is not all that popular in Puerto Rico. He was roundly criticized in his response to Hurricane Maria which struck the island in September of 2017. There was, of course, the viral moment where he visited Puerto Rico and threw paper towel rolls to crowds of people who had just lost their homes.
But for some reason, Trump has decided that was wants to try to make inroads in the island. Just last month, he announced that he will be sending $13 billion in aid to the territory. This is, unfortunately, three years after they actually needed it. And on Monday night, the president demanded that people of Puerto Rico vote for him.
During his speech last night in Sanford, Florida, Trump said, “I’m not gonna say the best, but I’m just about the best thing that ever happened to Puerto Rico. You better vote for me, Puerto Rico.”
Trump is devoting part of his speech to Puerto Rico. He says, "I'm not gonna say the best, but I'm just about the best thing that ever happened to Puerto Rico. You better vote for me, Puerto Rico." (Puerto Ricans who live in Puerto Rico don't have a vote for president.)
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) October 12, 2020
The problem is, that Puerto Ricans who live in Puerto Rico don’t actually have a vote for president. It is unclear whether Trump understands that or not. There is also the possibility that he was encouraging Puerto Ricans who currently live in Florida to support him.
Trump has never been much of a fan of the island. Former DHS Chief of Staff Miles Taylor recently told MSNBC, “One time before we went down, he told us not only did he want to purchase Greenland, he actually said he wanted to see if we could sell Puerto Rico, could we swap Puerto Rico for Greenland. Because in his words, Puerto Rico was dirty and the people were poor.”
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Todd Neikirk is a New Jersey based politics and technology writer. His work has been featured in psfk.com, foxsports.com and Pet Lifestyles Magazine. He enjoys sports, politics, technology and spending time at the shore with his family.