Under the law, only USA -flagged ships are allowed to move goods between any US ports.
President Donald Trump waived the Jones Act after both Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma to aid in the relief effort, but when he was initially approached about waiving it for Puerto Rico, he made excuses. He said that Puerto Rican residents would have to pay at least twice as much for food, drinking water and other supplies without the waiver. There was a Jones Act waiver put in place after Harvey; it expired on September 22.
U.S. Senator John McCain asked acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke on Tuesday to grant an emergency waiver of the law. The Category 4 storm struck Puerto Rico with winds of 155 miles per hour.
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Critics of the law call it a protectionist relic, and the Wall Street Journal editorialized this week that it should be permanently repealed.
Since the natural disaster, celebrities have been using their influence and finances to help in any way they can.
On Tuesday morning, before Mr. Trump's announcement of a visit, Representative Luis Gutiérrez, Democrat of IL, urged his colleagues to do more to focus on the crisis in Puerto Rico and expressed frustration at the lack of action by the government.
Many locals with relatives in Puerto Rico have yet to reach their loved ones.
Puerto Rico's population of 3.4 million American citizens is in the throes of a humanitarian crisis in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, which killed 16 people and ravaged the islands electricity grid.
The presenter of the video said the hospital she was in had "no water, no cash", and added that "the hospital is completely full with no generators, so they have open windows". The review process will also include evaluating whether there's a lack of availability of USA -flagged vessels. Now foreign-flagged vessels also will be able to move shipments from the USA mainland to Puerto Rico and between ports there.