President Donald Trump pledged to spare no effort to help Puerto Ricans recover from Maria's ruinous aftermath Friday even as San Juan's mayor, her voice breaking with rage, accused his administration of "killing us with the inefficiency".
Trump's tweets in response - in which he criticised Cruz for "poor leadership" and added, speaking of the people of Puerto Rico, "They want everything to be done for them" - sent celebrities scrambling to register their disgust. They.want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort.
The President again praised the federal government's response on the island, which is grappling with the devastating impact of Hurricane Maria, saying the 10,000 federal workers there were doing a "fantastic job".
He has pledged to spare no effort to help Puerto Rico recover from Maria's aftermath, and tweeted that military personnel and first responders have done "an unbelievable job", despite having "no electric, roads, phones etc".
Mario Torres, who lives in the former Air Force base in the coastal town of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, said the country was on the brink of disaster.
Yulín Cruz tweeted shortly after Trump, saying that the only goal was "saving lives".
He wrote: "She has been working 24/7. We can not be distracted by anything else", she wrote.
The Category Five hurricane knocked out power, cut off running water and killed at least 16 people so far on the island, home to 3.4 million Americans, when it struck a week ago.More news: German police probe threat to poison baby food products
More news: Trump to embark on tour of Asian countries in November
More news: Ryanair announces more than 18.000 flights cancelations
"Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda declared President Trump is going "straight to hell" in a fuming salvo responding to Trump's criticisms of Puerto Rican officials. Duke was asked by reporters at the White House whether she was satisfied with the federal government's response to Hurricane Maria and the devastation it has wrought.
She also criticized the acting secretary of Homeland Security of the United States, Elaine Duke, for her words that the situation in Purto Rico is "a good news story".
San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz rejects that view and she's pressing Trump to "make sure somebody is in charge that is up to the task of saving lives".
She told CNN on Friday that "When you don't have food for a baby, it's not a good-news story".
"We have fuel trucks sitting out there in what we call a "quick reaction force" with Marines who are ready to go, map out which hospitals they have to go to and we will get there before the lights go out and people die", Lt. Col. Mainz said. This is a "life-or-death" story.
"Well, maybe from where she is standing it's a good news story".
"We are dying" Cruz told CNN's Anderson Cooper on Friday night.
"Outside fake news or politically motivated ingrates. people are now starting to recognize the unbelievable work that has been done by FEMA and our great military", he tweeted. "Not fair to FR or effort!" the president tweeted on Saturday. "What you see here with me is not the reality of the people of Puerto Rico".