Sep 28, 2017

Puerto Rico struggling to distribute supplies

People on two sides of a destroyed bridge in Morovis, Puerto Rico. Photo: Gerald Herbert / AP

There are nearly 10,000 containers of supplies for Hurricane Maria relief stuck at the Port of San Juan, CNN reports, as a lack of truckers and blocked roads prohibit rescue crews from distributing them throughout the island.

Why it matters: President Trump signed off on a 10-day waiver of the Jones Act, which blocks foreign ships from carrying goods to U.S. ports, but even with resources coming in, Puerto Rico is struggling to get food, water and essential supplies to distressed areas.

The crisis:
  • Just 20% of truckers have come back to work since Maria hit because many of them have been displaced, per CNN.
  • Homeland Security advisor Tom Bossert told reporters that Trump was "not too late" and "not too early" waiving the Jones Act, adding that the main problem in Puerto Rico is "land-based" distribution.
  • Crowley, a shipping company, said it alone has 3,000 containers of food, water, medicine and construction materials stuck in San Juan. Only 4% of those containers have left the port.
  • The Puerto Rico Ports Authority is quickly running out of space to store the influx of supplies, CNBC reports.
  • San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz told CNN she has asked FEMA to let municipalities take charge of distributing resources.
  • Federal workers said they are setting up 11 regional centers in the remote areas that are cut off from aid.

Go deeper

The cost of going after Bloomberg

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Here's the growing dilemma for 2020 Democrats vying for a one-on-one showdown with frontrunner Bernie Sanders: Do they have the guts — and the money — to first stop Mike Bloomberg?

Why it matters: Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren all must weigh the costs of punching Bloomberg where he looks most vulnerable: stop-and-frisk, charges of sexism, billionaire entitlement. The more zealous the attacks, the greater the risk he turns his campaign ATM against them.

How Trump’s economy stacks up

Source: "Presidents and US Economy", Trump figures through 2019 courtesy of Alan Blinder; Note: Data shows real GDP and Q1 growth in each term is attributed to the previous president; Chart: Axios Visuals

Average economic growth under President Trump has outpaced the growth under Barack Obama, but not all of his recent predecessors.

Why it matters: GDP is the most comprehensive economic scorecard — and something presidents, especially Trump, use as an example of success. And it's especially relevant since Trump is running for re-election on his economic record.

Coronavirus cases rise as 14 American evacuees infected

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

14 Americans evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship tested positive for the novel coronavirus before being flown in a "specialist containment" on a plane repatriating U.S. citizens back home, the U.S. government said early Monday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,770 people and infected almost 70,000 others. Most cases and all but five of the deaths have occurred in mainland China. Taiwan confirmed its first death on Sunday, per multiple reports, in a 61-year-old man with underlying health conditions. Health officials were investigating how he became ill.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health