MSNBC

As Hurricane Dorian barrels toward Florida, people are noticing a markedly different reaction from President Donald Trump than when the hurricane was moving towards the American territory of Puerto Rico.

This past week, a string of tweets regarding the island indicated an indifference and, at times, even disdain from Trump for the residents of Puerto Rico. Now that the storm is heading towards Florida, Trump cancelled a state visit to Poland, a video message assuring Floridians that the government would expedite any needed relief, and he's likely to visit the state as well.

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President Donald Trump and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (National Archives)

It's been nearly two years since President Donald Trump's bungled visit to the American territory of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island. Trump infamously threw paper towel rolls into a crowd of residents affected by Maria, and told them the hurricane wasn't as bad as Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Trump claimed at the time that only 16 people died in Maria's wake, but later reports confirmed that the official death toll was actually over 3,000—the third deadliest hurricane in American history. Many of these were attributed to lack of power and federal aid to the territory, largely due to inaction on the part of the Trump administration.

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The President has a tense relationship with the United States territory of Puerto Rico. The Caribbean island has been a US territory since the late 1800s, but it is unclear if President Donald Trump knows that makes the well being of Puerto Ricans as much his responsibility as the welfare of Pennsylvanians.

Since his and his administration's poor showing after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island in 2017, Trump disparaged the government leadership of Puerto Rico and insulted the citizens, their culture and their home.

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Mark Wilson/Getty Images // Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

In a series of tweets, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz responded to President Donald Trump after he characterized her as "crazed," said that Puerto Rican politicians are “incompetent or corrupt” and falsely claimed that Puerto Rico has been “already been scheduled to receive more hurricane relief funding than any ‘place’ in history" following 2017's Hurricane Maria.

Cruz promised to call the president out on "every lie, every hypocrisy and every ill fated action against the people of Puerto Rico," adding that even his "insensitive, incapable, and vindictive" nature won't allow him to escape the death of 3,000 on his watch."

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MSNBC/Twitter

Hogan Gidley doesn't know a basic tenet of United States geography.

The White House Deputy Press Secretary in an interview with MSNBC referred to Puerto Rico as "that country" twice even though it's been a U.S. territory for more than two centuries.

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MSNBC/Twitter

Hogan Gidley doesn't know a basic tenet of United States geography.

The White House Deputy Press Secretary in an interview with MSNBC referred to Puerto Rico as "that country" twice even though it's been a U.S. territory for more than two centuries.

Keep reading...
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Donald Trump's actions and rhetoric regarding Puerto Rico have been fraught with missteps: throwing a roll of paper towels as a gesture of "hurricane aid," calling Puerto Ricans lazy, and more.

Last night, in a tweet about the Senate's clash over disaster aid, he referred to Puerto Rico as a "place" - quotation marks and all - and people aren't sure how to take it.

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