Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Corporate gatekeepers and big tech monopolists are making it more difficult than ever for independent media to survive. Please chip in today.

Ahmirah Porter, 9, stands silently behind a sign that reads "I've been poisoned by policy," as she joins more than 150 activists demonstrating outside of Flint City Hall on Jan. 8 to protest Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder's handling of the water crisis. (Jake May/Flint Journal-MLive.com via AP)

Sanders: Michigan Governor Must Resign over Flint Lead-Poisoning Crisis

Common Dreams staff

Democratic presidential hopeful U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders on Saturday called on Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder to resign for his administration’s failure to deal with a lead-poisoning crisis that has sickened thousands of children in Flint, Michigan.

“There are no excuses. The governor long ago knew about the lead in Flint’s water. He did nothing. As a result, hundreds of children were poisoned. Thousands may have been exposed to potential brain damage from lead. Gov. Snyder should resign,” Sanders said.

Problems with Flint’s public water system date to a decision nearly two years ago by a receiver, appointed by the governor, who decided to cut costs by drawing the city’s drinking water from the polluted Flint River instead of from Lake Huron.

The governor and other state officials knew – but did not acknowledge until last fall – that the river water was corroding pipes and causing lead to leach into the drinking water. The decision not to add chemicals to prevent corrosion of the pipes was made at the direction of the governor’s Department of Environmental Quality. The state health department in Michigan apparently knew about elevated lead levels in the blood of children but did not warn the public.

“Because of the conduct by Gov. Snyder’s administration and his refusal to take responsibility, families will suffer from lead poisoning for the rest of their lives. Children in Flint will be plagued with brain damage and other health problems. The people of Flint deserve more than an apology,” Sanders said.

City official were under renewed fire on Friday for sending out shut-off notices to residents who are behind on paying their water bills.

Slammed as "ludicrous, the move comes as Republican Governor Rick Snyder finally asked President Obama to step in and declare a federal state of emergency.

The Michigan attorney general and the federal Justice Department are also investigating whether any laws were broken.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Wall Street-Funded Democrat PAC to Spend $1 Million in Bid to Unseat Tlaib: Report

"Imagine spending $1 million to oust Rashida Tlaib instead of organizing in Detroit to make sure Michigan goes blue," quipped one progressive group.

Brett Wilkins ·


Parents Demand Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty 'For the Sake of the Children'

"We cannot remain silent as the fossil fuel industry and world leaders rob our children of a livable future," parents from 32 nations wrote in an open letter.

Brett Wilkins ·


'We Can Do Better' Than Biden's Paltry Student Debt Relief Plan, Says AOC

The president's approach, said the New York Democrat, is "just enough to anger the people against it *and* the people who need forgiveness the most."

Julia Conley ·


Right-Wing Supreme Court Poised to Make US Gun Carnage Even Worse

The U.S. Supreme Court's right-wing majority could soon "obliterate even the mildest of gun regulations in service of its gun lobby masters."

Kenny Stancil ·


'Enough Is Enough!': Thousands Protest Outside NRA Convention in Texas

"I'm just tired of the NRA subordinating children's rights for gun rights," said one gun lobby opponent just three days after the school massacre in Uvalde.

Brett Wilkins ·

Common Dreams Logo