President Donald Trump’s criticism on Twitter of the mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, drew sharp rebukes across social media Saturday, including from Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator and original star of “Hamilton.”
Miranda, who has family in Puerto Rico and is raising money for Hurricane Maria relief efforts, said the president was “going straight to hell,” adding “No long lines for you. Someone will say, ‘Right this way, sir.’ They’ll clear a path.”
Trump lashed out at Carmen Yulín Cruz, the mayor of the Puerto Rican capital, in a series of tweets Saturday morning, one day after she appeared on television and described in stark terms the dire conditions on the island. The president accused Cruz of “poor leadership” and implied that Puerto Ricans were relying too heavily on the federal government, adding that they “want everything to be done for them.”
Cruz responded to Trump’s comments in an interview on MSNBC, saying: “I was asking for help. I wasn’t saying anything nasty about the president.”
She added: “This is a time when everyone shows their true colors. I have no time for distractions. All I have is time for people to move forward, get help.”
Miranda suggested the president was lying about the effectiveness of the federal response, and took aim at Trump for spending the weekend at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey.
“She has been working 24/7. You have been GOLFING. You’re going straight to hell. Fastest golf cart you ever took,” Miranda wrote. “Did you tweet this one from the first hole, 18th hole, or the club? Anyway, it’s a lie. You’re a congenital liar.”
While it is not unusual for celebrities to criticize Trump on Twitter, the remarks were particularly searing, and they came as a major dispute was unfolding over whether the federal government was doing enough to help Puerto Rico, a U.S. commonwealth with 3.4 million citizens.
The governor, Ricardo A. Rosselló, has called Hurricane Maria the “greatest catastrophe” in the island’s modern history. Officials have struggled to distribute supplies and many residents are still without power, food and water.
“Puerto Ricans need supplies and resources just as badly as their fellow Americans in Texas and Florida,” Miranda wrote in a recent column for The Hollywood Reporter. “This need is magnified by their geographic isolation from the mainland.”
On Saturday, he repeated his call for donations, linking to the website of the Hispanic Federation, a nonprofit group that is raising money for hurricane relief efforts.
Miranda was far from the president’s only high-profile critic Saturday, as actors, singers and politicians expressed their outrage and called on Trump to do more.
“’Give Trump a chance!’ they said. Well, Maria was his chance, to help millions of our citizens. Instead, he tweeted and sneered. Disgusted,” George Takei wrote.
Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York wrote that Cruz is “fighting hard for her people” and said Trump “should hear her calls for help and do more for Puerto Rico.”
Comedian and television host Ellen DeGeneres tweeted at Cruz, calling her a hero.
“I see you, I hear you, I love you. You’re a hero,” DeGeneres wrote.
Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., drew comparisons between Trump’s response to Hurricane Maria and President George W. Bush’s actions in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
“As tone deaf as George Bush’s response to Katrina was,” Himes said, “I don’t think he would have attacked the mayor from the comfort of a luxury golf club.”