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Trump has only faced one really bad crisis, and he botched it


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We already knew that in October, Trump tweeted — inaccurately — that the Puerto Rican government was planning to use disaster relief money to pay off old debts.


But the new report says Trump went beyond bad tweets and tried to base policy on this misapprehension, urging his team to violate the law and redirect the disaster assistance money to Texas and Florida instead.




George W. Bush’s administration’s first term was defined by 9/11, and Barack Obama’s by the financial crisis. Trump has not faced a comparable dominant external challenge.


But Hurricane Maria — a punishing storm that hit an island with rickety infrastructure — is the closest he’s come, a problem that he did not cause and that any administration would struggle to handle. Trump did not just struggle with Maria; he failed miserably. To the best of our knowledge, thousands of people died due to the hurricane and months of ensuing blackouts. Trump’s only reaction has been to get angry at people who point out how bad it was.



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