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President Donald Trump attends a briefing with senior military personnel and Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello. Photo: MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

A day after the Puerto Rican governor raised Hurricane Maria's death toll to 2,975 — higher than Hurricane Katrina — President Donald Trump defended his administration's storm response, saying it did "a fantastic job."

Why this matters: Trump has continued to come under criticism for responding too slowly and inadequately to the Category 4 storm, which knocked out the entire island's power grid and caused a humanitarian disaster. If the revised death count is correct, it would make Hurricane Maria one of the deadliest natural disasters in U.S. history.

Speaking to reporters at the White House on Wednesday, Trump also claimed the island had lost power before the storm struck on September 20, 2017.

"Don't forget their electric plant was dead before the hurricane. If you look back on your records you'll see that the plant was dead, it was shut, it was bankrupt, it was out of business... And then when the hurricane came people said what are we going to do about electricity. That wasn't really the hurricane, that was gone before the hurricane."

Be smart: While the island's power authority was in dire financial straits prior to the storm, the grid was functioning, having escaped major damage from Hurricane Irma in the weeks before.

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Health

Black churches become vaccine hubs

A woman arrives at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic outside the Pennsylvania Avenue Baptist Church in southeast D.C. Photo: Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Black pastors have a new job on their plates during COVID-19: encouraging skeptical congregants to get vaccinated.

Why it matters: “There’s distrust in our community. We can’t ignore that,” Rev. James Coleman of D.C.'s All Nations Baptist told AP.

Biden names USPS board of governors nominees, as Democrats put pressure on DeJoy

United States Postal Service Postmaster General Louis DeJoy at a Feb. 24 committee hearing. Photo: Graeme Jennings/pool/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden on Wednesday nominated a former postal union lawyer, a vote-by-mail advocate, and a former deputy postmaster general to sit on the Postal Services' Board of Governors.

Why it matters: The nominations, which require Senate confirmation, come as some Democrats call for Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's ouster and others push for Biden to nominate board members to name a new postmaster general.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Tiger Woods crash: What we know

Photo: Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Tiger Woods underwent emergency surgery to repair damage to his right leg and ankle, after he was involved in a single-vehicle accident on Tuesday in which his SUV ran off the road.

What we know: The golf star "is currently awake, responsive and recovering in his hospital room" at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, according to a late-night statement from his team.