Puerto Rico bonds sink; White House says no debt bailout

Mr Trump talks with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello
Credit
Reuters
Mr Trump talks with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello Credit Reuters
Author

08 October, 2017

San Juan's mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz is not backing down from Donald Trump.

The former Celebrity Apprentice host and the mayor have been feuding since last week when she criticized the Trump administration's response to Hurricane Maria's devastation in Puerto Rico.

We hope that Trump similarly will come around to a recognition of the need to unite the country after disaster strikes, and that he will make his intentions plain in that regard when he addresses his fellow citizens in Puerto Rico tomorrow.

Trump added Cruz was "very complimentary only a few days ago", but "has now been told by the Democrats that you must be nasty to Trump". You may recall him doing the same thing to Hillary Clinton, when calling Clinton a "nasty woman" during the 2016 presidential debates - a statement which American women have since used to oppose Trump.

After President Donald Trump said Puerto Rico's debt will be wiped out, White House officials rushed to rule out any USA bailout of bondholders, who lent the commonwealth about $74 billion. More than half the island is still without electricity or potable water, and aid workers are struggling to deliver food and medical supplies to people living outside major population centers. She donned a shirt that had the phrase, "Help us, we are dying", on it for an interview Friday with CNN.

Mexico's offer comes in the context of strained relations with the USA in the months since Mr Trump took office.

"I hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, but you've thrown our budget a little out of whack..."

The storm added greatly to the woes of Puerto Rico's 3.5 million residents, who endured a decade-long recession made worse by austerity policies to deal with the island's $72 billion debt.

Until Maria, Santiago sold excess electricity generated by his six by three foot wide panels back to Puerto Rico's now-defunct grid.

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The President also memorably described Clinton as a "nasty woman" on the campaign trial previous year.

During his briefing in San Juan, Trump singled out Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló "for not playing politics" with the response.

Cruz criticized the Trump administration's hurricane response to the island.

Air Force One brought the president, first lady Melania Trump and aides to Puerto Rico for a tour stretching through the afternoon.

During Trump's visit to the USA territory on Tuesday, the mayor and president shook hands.

"We've had support from Black Lives Matter, Filipino groups, Cuban Solidarity groups", Velgara said. "Everybody around this table and everybody watching can really be very proud of what's taken place in Puerto Rico".

Trump also garnered negative attention during his visit to Puerto Rico after he threw rolls of paper towels into a crowd in the Guaynabo district.

President Donald Trump signaled Tuesday night that he wanted to "wipe out" Puerto Rico's debt. In another missive, Trump said too many people in Puerto Rico "want everything to be done for them".


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