House Speaker Ryan doesn’t dispute Puerto Rico death toll

House Speaker Ryan doesn’t dispute Puerto Rico death toll,

House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis., speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018, in Washington. Behind him are House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., right. Ryan is rejecting President Donald Trump’s assertion an official government death toll for last year’s hurricane in Puerto Rico is wrong. The Wisconsin Republican says he has “no reason to dispute” a study that found nearly 3,000 people on the island died from Hurricane Maria last year. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Thursday he had “no reason” to dispute Puerto Rico’s official death toll of 3,000 from last year’s Hurricane Maria, speaking after his fellow Republican President Donald Trump accused Democrats of inflating the death toll to make the president look bad.

“Casualties don’t make a person look bad,” Ryan told reporters at a regular press conference, “so I have no reason to dispute these numbers.” Ryan noted he had been in Puerto Rico after the hurricane hit and said it had been “devastating. This was a horrible storm.”

(Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Andrea Ricci)


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