Congressman Luis Gutierrez returns to Chicago from Puerto Rico after aid trip

Monday, October 2, 2017
U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez returns from Puerto Rico
U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Chicago, returned Oct. 1, 2017 after a weekend viewing the devastation in Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Chicago, returned to Chicago Sunday evening after spending the weekend helping FEMA crews hand out supplies.

Gutierrez, whose parents were born in Puerto Rico, also toured the devastation.

"It's very difficult to see people hungry, to see people thirsty," he said Sunday.

Gutierrez said that President Trump needs to do more, and stop attacking Puerto Ricans.

"Mr. President, stop calling us lazy. Stop calling us incompetent. Stop blaming us for this tragedy that has fallen on the people of Puerto Rico. A hurricane is a natural disaster. You've been playing golf all weekend," Gutierrez said.

Three of Gutierrez's family members who live in Puerto Rico will also join him on the United Airlines flight to Chicago.

Gutierrez landed on the island Friday afternoon and posted pictures of the devastation he saw from the air on Facebook -- more than a week after Hurricane Maria hit the island on Sept. 20.

Gutierrez was moved to tears Friday night in a television appearance as he described the destruction he saw on the island.

Gutierrez has been sharply critical of the Trump administration's response to the disaster, and is calling on the federal government to do more to help the people of Puerto Rico. His United Airlines flight was filled with much-needed supplies, including some things that he personally packed for his loved ones, who he said had been rationing food.

Congressman Luis Gutierrez was headed home Oct. 1, 2017 from visiting hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico.

He is now calling for military intervention on the island.

Monday morning, Gutierrez will meet with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and other community leaders to discuss relief efforts to Puerto Rico, as well as possible relocation of Puerto Ricans displaced by the hurricane.

Also on Monday, the city will announce that it will send 23 personnel from the Chicago Fire Department to Puerto Rico on Wednesday with defibrillators, stretchers, communications equipment and other supplies.

On Tuesday, Gutierrez heads to Washington, D.C., where the House will be in session.

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