Former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman alleges in her new book that President Trump and White House chief of staff John Kelly used derogatory terms to refer to Puerto Ricans.
Manigault Newman wrote that Trump and Kelly "referred to Puerto Ricans with derogatory terms many times" in her memoir, though she did not specify what the terms were, according to NBC News.© Provided by The Hill
She also criticized Kelly over the administration's response to Hurricane Maria, which devastated Puerto Rico last September.
The former White House aide said Kelly, who fired Manigault Newman in December, argued that Hurricane Maria caused more damage in Puerto Rico because of its "screwed-up" infrastructure, according to her book.
She also accused Kelly of saying that Puerto Rico's government was seeking to "exploit the hurricane" to get the rest of the United States to pay for its electrical grid.
Manigualt Newman praised Tom Bossert, Trump's former homeland security adviser, for pushing back, casting herself as seeking to help him in an internal battle.
"And God bless (Trump's former homeland security adviser) Tom Bossert, who tried to get the resources, tried to fight," she said. "He and I were fighting arm in arm, hand in hand, to try to advocate for Puerto Rico to get what they needed, and John Kelly shut it down."
The White House has blasted Manigault Newman and her book, saying it is full of lies and criticizing the media for paying attention to her. White House officials argue Manigault Newman is a disgruntled former employee now seeking to make a buck by peddling false stories.
Manigault Newman said Trump's actions during a visit to Puerto Rico, in which he tossed rolls of paper towels into a crowd as if he were shooting baskets, as an example of his lack of empathy.
"Just like Charlottesville, it was all about him. The devastated people loved him! He was unfairly persecuted by the media ..." Manigault Newman wrote. "His total lack of empathy is bad enough, but I believe many of the problems and delays with getting aid to Puerto Rico were partly political."
Last week, the Puerto Rican government acknowledged that more than 1,400 people likely died on the island due to Hurricane Maria ,which is roughly 20 times the previous official estimate.
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