September 13, 2018 / 3:07 PM / 2 months ago

House Speaker Ryan doesn't dispute Puerto Rico death toll

FILE PHOTO: Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) speaks after the House of Representatives passed tax reform legislation on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 19, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Thursday he had “no reason” to dispute Puerto Rico’s official death toll of 3,000 from last year’s Hurricane Maria, speaking after his fellow Republican President Donald Trump accused Democrats of inflating the death toll to make the president look bad.

“Casualties don’t make a person look bad,” Ryan told reporters at a regular press conference, “so I have no reason to dispute these numbers.” Ryan noted he had been in Puerto Rico after the hurricane hit and said it had been “devastating. This was a horrible storm.”

Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Andrea Ricci

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