WATCH: Snyder, EPA administrator testify at Flint congressional hearing

- The second congressional hearing this week on the water crisis in Flint, Michigan began at 9 a.m. Thursday. Gov. Rick Snyder and EPA administrator Gina McCarthy testified.

FOX 2 livestreamed the hearing here. Click here to watch it.

FOX 2's Amy Lange is in Washington, D.C. and attended the hearing. She'll have an in-dept analysis of the testimony heard tonight on FOX 2 News beginning at 5 p.m.

And the hearing today, Congressman Elijah Cummings of Maryland said that if Snyder were running a business instead of running a state, he would probably be facing criminal charges.

Snyder told the panel at a contentious hearing that the state Department of Environmental Quality repeatedly gave him assurances that the water being piped in from the Flint River was safe -- when in fact it had dangerous levels of lead.

But Cummings said the governor should have done more to push back against state experts. He says the committee has documents "showing that people all around the governor were sounding the alarms, but he either ignored them or didn't hear them."

The chairman of the oversight panel, Republican Jason Chaffetz of Utah, says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also deserves blame. He told EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, "You failed."

He also took issue with McCarthy's comment that it was "courageous" for the EPA's Midwest regional chief to resign as the crisis got worse. The Republican lawmaker told her, "If you want to do the courageous thing, then you, too, should resign."

UPDATE: Gov. Rick Snyder issued a statement about his testimony before the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

“I appreciated the opportunity to voluntarily testify before the committee today to explain the actions we are taking as a state to help the people of Flint and ensure that nothing like this can ever happen again. I also am thankful I was able to meet personally with Chair Jason Chaffetz and Ranking Member Elijah Cummings.

“This was a failure of government at all levels. Local, state, and federal officials all failed the families of Flint. There is plenty of blame to share, but finger pointing will not help the people of Flint. That’s why I’m committed to delivering permanent, long-term solutions and the clean, safe drinking water to Flint that every Michigan citizen deserves. Since I first learned that state water experts were wrong about the lead levels in Flint’s water, we have been taking action to protect and serve the people of Flint - and all of Michigan - better. 
“There are thorough, independent investigations underway to identify what went wrong, identify changes we need to make, and help our citizens hold us accountable for fixing this problem. I remain committed to a complete and comprehensive change in state government that puts public health and safety first.
“We are taking responsibility and taking action in Michigan, and that is absolutely essential in Washington, too. Inefficient, ineffective, and unaccountable bureaucrats at the EPA allowed this disaster to continue unnecessarily. I understand that the people of Flint are angry; they should be angry. But I am fully committed to fixing this. I am going to make Flint and every community in Michigan a better place to live. We have a lot to learn, and a lot to do.” 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Up Next:

  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories you may be interested in - includes Advertiser Stories