Fox News panel slams Trump’s Puerto Rico conspiracy theory: ‘He’s trying to turn disaster into political victory’

During a segment on the Fox News show Outnumbered this Thursday, the panel tore into President Trump‘s latest conspiracy theory regarding the death toll in the wake of Puerto Rico’s Hurricane Maria.

Trump sparked outrage with a series of tweets Thursday morning where he questioned the estimated death toll on the island, which hovers around 3,000. According to Trump, the numbers were doctored by Democrats in order to make his response to the disaster look like a scandalous failure.

“3000 people did not die in the two hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico,” Trump tweeted. “When I left the Island, AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths. As time went by it did not go up by much. Then, a long time later, they started to report really large numbers, like 3000…”

“This was done by the Democrats in order to make me look as bad as possible when I was successfully raising Billions of Dollars to help rebuild Puerto Rico,” he added. “If a person died for any reason, like old age, just add them onto the list. Bad politics. I love Puerto Rico!”

Later on Fox News, the panel expressed disbelief that Trump would wade into such a false claim as another hurricane bears down upon the U.S.

“What is this about?” panelist Steve Hilton said. “I think that this is one of those moments when you really respect the elected officials below the federal level because they’re often the ones that deal with things that affect people’s lives — governors, mayors, and so on — they’re doing the really hard work on the ground … But this political argument is really … unseemly, disgusting, I mean it’s really — what are we doing?”

“It cheapens us as a country,” co-panelist Harris Faulkner chimed in.

Fox co-host Melissa Francis slammed the president’s tweets as “distasteful,” adding that “to take up on the issue of how many people are dead is so disgusting.”

Katie Pavlich pointed out how Trump’s tweets present a “distraction” from learning about the mistakes made regarding Puerto Rico in order to better prepare for Hurricane Florence.

When asked why Trump can’t put politics aside during times like this, Leslie Marshall replied that “we should, and the President didn’t.”

“And you can never, Left or Right, no matter what office you’re in, try and turn disaster into political victory.”

Watch the full segment below, via Fox News Insider:

Featured image via screen grab

Sky Palma

Before launching DeadState back in 2012, Sky Palma has been blogging about politics, social issues and religion for over a decade. He lives in Los Angeles and also enjoys Brazilian jiu jitsu, chess, music and art.