President Obama will visit Flint, Michigan, next week to show that he still cares about the city’s water contamination crisis and to blame Republicans in Congress for ignoring the problem.
Mr. Obama’s trip next Wednesday will show that the administration “is committed to responding to the situation,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said.
“The president is prepared to travel there and demonstrate that while the public discussion of this situation doesn’t retain the same spot in the limelight, the administration is committed to following through on helping that community recover,” Mr. Earnest said.
Although the EPA is being blamed for not alerting the public to the crisis sooner, Mr. Earnest said the agency has “ramped up their monitoring of the water supply” and the administration has awarded grants to local health care providers to respond to the crisis.
“That certainly stands in stark contrast to some Republicans in Congress who advocate for the elimination of the EPA,” Mr. Earnest said. “How, exactly, is that going to improve the situation. There’s a lot to talk about in Flint. The president’s looking forward to taking advantage of this opportunity. … We certainly would welcome a greater commitment, or frankly any commitment, from Republicans in Congress to responding to this situation.”