Friday, April 8, 2016

Congressional inquiries, emails, and lawsuits in the Flint Water Crisis this week

I began Slow drip of Flint Water Crisis erodes Rick Snyder's approval with a program note.
At the end of Task force findings on the Flint Water Crisis, I told my readers to "Stay tuned.  I'm sure I'll have more, including the effects the crisis has had on Snyder's favorability ratings."  That's really the least of the state's worries, but it has been in the news lately.
As I wrote, Michigan and Snyder have worse problems resulting from the Flint Water Crisis than his sinking approval ratings.  Yesterday, WXYZ reported on three of them.

Leading the pack is a direct follow-up to Snyder testifies before Congress about the Flint Water Crisis.  U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings sent a letter to Snyder about the latter's testimony as well as questions about the process and transparency behing the Governor's Task Force findings.  Here's the WXYZ report: Cummings questions Snyder on Flint.

Congress continues to look into the Flint water crisis, Rep. Elijah Cummings is questioning some of the answers provided by Governor Rick Snyder.
Another Congressional committee hearing into the Flint Water Crisis that is sure to feature attacks on the EPA from the Republicans and attacks on Snyder and the Emergency Manager Law from the Democrats--that should produce a lot of heat and smoke.  I'll pass along all of that, along with any light it manages to shed, when it happens.

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley, who has managed to stay out of the scandal, got sucked into it the same day.  Follow over the jump for that.

The same day that Snyder got the letter from Cummings, an email from Calley was released.  While it didn't make him culpable in causing the crisis, it certainly made him look arrogant, elitist, and disrespectful in his reponse to it.  WXYZ reports in Email uproar in Flint water crisis.

An email from the Lt. Gov. is causing an uproar in the Flint water crisis.
I wrote the following about how the investigation into the scandal might affect Calley in a response to a comment to Michigan Attorney General launches investigation into Flint water crisis.
Schuette is a Republican, but he doesn't owe Snyder much in the way of favors. He's going to thread a narrow path. On the one hand, he's going to use this to make enough of a show that he'll help himself look "independent" for a general election. He might even harm Snyder as long as it also hurts the current Lieutenant Governor, Brian Calley, helping himself in the primary. On the other hand, he doesn't want to hurt Snyder so badly that it makes him look disloyal to the GOP. He especially does not want to force Snyder from office. The last thing he wants is Calley as an incumbent Governor to run against in a primary. That will be quite a balancing act!
This kind of flap works perfectly for the kind of result I described.  It damages Calley by tying him to the scandal and putting him in an unflattering light.

That's not all.  On Wednesday, the state was sued over Flint water crisis .

A lawsuit has been filed against the state of Michigan over the Flint water crisis.
Paired with the email and his reaction to it, Calley's response comes off as dismissive.  Again, this does not help him at all.

The next day, the state was sued again over the effects of the Emergency Manager Law, this time a class action lawsuit on behalf of Detroit kids.

One attorney has filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of some Detroit Public Schools students.
This has been a very busy and bad week for Snyder and Calley, and there is still all of Friday to go.  Stay tuned.

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