Gov. Rick Snyder maintained his stance that the Flint water crisis a 'failure of government at all levels' in his opening remarks to a congressional oversight committee Thursday.
Snyder's prepared remarks were provided to the media prior to his scheduled 9 a.m. appearance in Washington DC Thursday.
FOX 2 will be livestreaming the hearing. Watch it in the video player above or click here to watch.
Amy Lange is in Washington for hearing. Follow her tweets here: Tweets by @langeamyFOX2
"Local, state, and federal officials - we all failed the families of Flint," Snyder will say. "This is not about politics or partisanship. I am not going to point fingers or shift blame; there is plenty of that to share, and neither will help the people of Flint."
The governor also talked talking about the personal burden of responsibility he has felt.
"Not a day or night goes by that this tragedy doesn’t weigh on my mind. The questions I should have asked, the answers I should have demanded, how I could have prevented this.
"That’s why I am so committed to delivering permanent, long-term solutions and the clean, safe drinking water that every Michigan citizen deserves."
Snyder's remarks point toward the state's Department of Environmental Quality which "assured us that Flint's water was safe" from the day the Flint River was first used as an interim water supply April 25, 2014.
"It wasn’t. A water expert at the federal EPA, tried to raise an alarm in February 2015, and he was silenced," Snyder says. "It was on October 1, 2015, that I learned that our state experts were wrong. Flint’s water had dangerous levels of lead. On that day, I took immediate action."
Snyder discussed what measures the state is taking to fix the situation while pushing for an additional $165 million in federal aid for long-term solutions.
He also called on Congress to toughen the federal lead and copper rules to keep a similar situation from happening in other American cities.
Snyder says the water crisis should never have happened.
"We have uncovered systemic failures at the Michigan DEQ. The fact is, bureaucrats created a culture that valued technical compliance over common sense - and the result was that lead was leaching into residents’ water."