There were fireworks today at the Flint Hearings. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder finally showed up. There were calls from Democrats on the committee for him to resign, as Republicans attempted to shield him, and deflect the responsibility onto the EPA, and the Feds.
The ranking Democrat on the U.S. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee issued a blistering indictment of the Snyder administration on Thursday moments before the Michigan governor began his own testimony over the Flint water contamination crisis. Rep. Elijah Cummings suggested that Republicans were “desperately” trying to blame the crisis on the federal Environmental Protection Agency. “I agree that EPA should have done more, they should have rescued the people of Flint from Gov. Snyder’s vindictive administration and its utter incompetence at every level,” Cummings said. Cummings suggested that if Snyder had been the CEO of a children’s toy company that sold toys with lead “he would be hauled up on criminal charges.” “The board of directors would throw him out and shareholders would revolt,” Cummings said. Snyder, in his opening remarks, outlined steps the state is taking to address the man-made disaster and highlighted ongoing probes of the Michigan environmental quality and health departments. “We are taking responsibility and taking action in Michigan, and that is absolutely essential here in Washington, too. Inefficient, ineffective, and unaccountable bureaucrats at the EPA allowed this disaster to continue unnecessarily,” he said.