Cruz blasted Trump last September for not reacting quickly enough after Maria slammed into Puerto Rico and knocked out power on the island, flooded roads, destroyed bridges and left thousands of people stranded.
There were 2,975 deaths attributed to the hurricane. Florida, we've been given A-plusses for.
The president raised eyebrows Tuesday when he touted the response efforts in a meeting to go over preparations for the potentially devastating Hurricane Florence inching toward the Carolinas. "I actually think it is one of the best jobs that's ever been done with respect to what this is all about", he added.
At the time, the administration committed to a more aggressive response to storms that struck Texas, even as that situation there became more manageable and Puerto Rico desperately needed more assistance. A vast shipment of water bottles that were meant to be delivered to victims of 2017's destructive Hurricane Maria appear to be still sitting, unused one year later, on a runway in Ceiba, Puerto Rico.
"Puerto Rico was very important".
A CBS reporter who picked up on the viral photos of the unused water bottles confirmed that they were brought to the island and turned over to Puerto Rico's central government. He called on the governor of Puerto Rico Ricardo Rossello to launch an official independent investigation into the incident.
"3000 people did not die in the two hurricanes that hit Puerto Rico", Mr Trump wrote on Twitter, without offering evidence for the claim.
"This was the worst natural disaster in our modern history", he said.
More than a million people are under mandatory evacuation orders, and coastal residents frantically boarded up homes and businesses and hit the road as the storm approached.
Trump, having long struggled to express empathy at times of national crises, sparked outrage when he feuded with the mayor of San Juan and passed out paper towels to victims like he was shooting baskets during his visit to the island. "They really do not have any connection with reality and it just shows that for him, everything is about him and political posturing", she said. He has no solidarity, no sympathy, no empathy for anything that does not make him look good. "You did not do a good job in Puerto Rico".