President Donald Trump talks with reporters as he departures the Oval Office of the White House for Indianapolis, in Washington D.C., U.S. September 27, 2017.

Carlos Barria | Reuters

President Donald Trump talks with reporters as he departures the Oval Office of the White House for Indianapolis, in Washington D.C., U.S. September 27, 2017.

Puerto Rico’s governor, Ricardo Rosello, said earlier this week that the administration has been responsive to the island’s needs, and contrasted with Cruz’s emotional plea on Friday. For most of the week, Trump has deployed Rosello’s remarks to deflect criticism of the federal government’s response.

Although Trump’s tweets drew a measured response from Cruz herself on Saturday, they stirred a hornet’s nest of criticism on social media.

Actor Lin Manuel Miranda, who is of Puerto Rican descent and has rallied with other celebrities to contribute to the island’s relief efforts, savaged Trump in a series of tweets he posted on Saturday.

Preet Bharara, the Manhattan federal prosecutor whom Trump abruptly dismissed earlier this year, faulted the president for his own leadership failures, and mocked his response.

Charles W. Cooke, an editor for conservative journal The National Review, said that while Trump didn’t deserve the early critiques of his response, his posts on Saturday had changed Cooke’s opinion.

Since Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico with gale-force winds more than a week ago, frustration has mounted amid deteriorating conditions. Power and phone connectivity is scarce, as are basic necessities on the island, which is usually a draw for vacationers from the mainland.

–The Associated Press and CNBC’s Natalie Daher contributed to this article.

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