By Miriam Raftery
Photos: Contaminated water in Flint, Michagan (Flint Water Disaster on Facebook)
January 20, 2016 (Washington D.C.)—On the heels of the poisoned drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan caused by the state cutting corners to save costs and then covering up the consequences, President Barack Obama vetoed a measure passed by the Republican-controlled Congress that would have killed an Environmental Protection Agency clean water rule that allows the federal government to protect the nation’s waterways and keep them clean.
San Diego’s Republican Congressmen Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa voted for weakening clean water protections and shifting responsibility for many waterways back to the states, while Democrats Susan Davis, Scott Peters and Juan Vargas voted against.
In Michigan, Republican Governor Rick Snyder’s administration ordered that the polluted Flint River be used for drinking water to save money and ignored federal law requiring an anti-corrosion additive that would have cost just $100 a day. That decision caused lead pipes to corrode, leeching lead into the public’s drinking water. For two years, families have been drinking contaminated water. Now children are suffering irreversible lead poisoning including brain damage. Also, 10 people have died of Legionnaire’s disease believed tied to tainted river water.