Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday he is working with the Trump administration on an aid package for Puerto Rico as they deal with the devastation left by Hurricane Maria.
"We've all seen the very serious problems facing the people of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands as a result of the recent hurricanes," McConnell said on the Senate floor Tuesday. "The damage has been terrible. The latest hurricane was especially devastating."
"We want [the people of Puerto Rico] to know that we will continue to work with FEMA, the Department of Defense, and the rest of the administration to help in the recovery. And I expect we'll hear more soon on what additional resources will be necessary in Puerto Rico and elsewhere in the paths of the storms," McConnell said. "The recovery effort will not be easy. It's not going to be quick. But we're here to do our part."
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called for McConnell and the White House to speed up their response to the situation on the island. He said an aid package should be on the Senate floor to vote on by the end of the week.
"The Trump administration and the Republican majority should put an emergency aid package on the floor before the week is out," Schumer said on the Senate floor. "The situation is desperate. The need is urgent. It's time to act now."
He also said President Trump has been slow to respond to the situation and likened his response to that of a public relations campaign.
"This fits a pattern of how our president, unfortunately, responds to natural disasters. He insists that the relief and recovery efforts are doing well or doing great," Schumer said. "Sometimes it has no relationship to the facts on the ground as if this is a public relations campaign and not a rescue, recovery and rebuilding operation. The time for tweets and talk is over."