Donald Trump finally touched down in Puerto Rico today, where the island's 3.4 million people are still without food, water and power in the wake of Hurricane Maria's widespread destruction.
At his first stop, the President met with Federal and local officials, where he downplayed the effects of Maria, implying it was not "a real catastrophe like Katrina," and poked fun at the U.S. territory's expensive storm damage. "I hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, but you’ve thrown our budget a little out of whack," he said, as Melania laughed by his side, both acting like step parents guilting their step children. "We've spent a lot of money on Puerto Rico."
Trump's brief stay continued with an appearance at a local church, called Calvary Chapel of Puerto Rico, where he tossed paper towels into a crowd like they were basketballs—yet another self-congratulatory move on the President's island-wide propaganda tour. Resources, including paper towels, are much-needed for Puerto Ricans, but it's telling how Trump needed to have a packed crowd delightfully squealing at his small contribution.
The Calvary Chapel crowd was reportedly invited by Puerto Rican politicans, pushing regular churchgoers to the side for what was originally scheduled to be a community service event. Describing Trump's visit as "unexpected" and "overwhelming," one Calvary Chapel attendee anonymously told OUT that it became an unwarranted "celebrity appearance," adding that "this was a political show for Trump to gain points with Puerto Rico." Despite Trump's spectacle, the Calvary Chapel still prepared boxes of goods for Puerto Ricans in need.
Trump's flashy spectacle ultimately interrupted and "threw off the focus" of Calvary Chapel's initial mission to prepare boxes of goods for Puerto Ricans in need. The pastor knew in advance that the Guaynabo mayor and Puerto Rican governor would be attending, but hadn't heard about Trump's cameo until Tuesday morning. What began as a religious effort snowballed into political peacocking. "We did not like how things turned out," our source said.
Watch Trump channel LeBron James, below.