Chaffetz Defeats Amendment to Subpoena Michigan Governor for Documents Withheld on Flint Water Crisis

Jan 24, 2017
Press Release

Chaffetz Defeats Amendment to Subpoena Michigan Governor for Documents Withheld on Flint Water Crisis


All Republicans Vote Against Motion to Enforce Committee’s Own Document Request


Washington, D.C. (Jan. 24, 2017)—At a meeting today of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Chairman Jason Chaffetz led Republican opposition in an effort to defeat an amendment offered by Rep. Brenda Lawrence to subpoena Michigan Governor Rick Snyder for documents he has refused to provide in response to a bipartisan request made nearly a year ago by Chaffetz and Ranking Member Elijah E. Cummings.

“Mr. Chairman, I still believe when this Committee answered the plea of the Flint residents, we held three hearings to investigate it. And I publically again applaud you for your leadership,” Lawrence said.  “I also remember, Mr. Chairman, you personally went to Flint and made public promises that this Committee would get the answers. But here we are today, one year later, still waiting for documents. Is this Committee going to let him get away with that? I offered this amendment because the Committee must decide that question. Let’s work together to complete this investigation properly, with answers to the men and women and children of the City of Flint.”

In response, Chaffetz said he was “opposed to this amendment” and that Michigan officials “have made great progress.”

“Ten thousand children in Flint suffered lead poisoning because of a decision made by Governor Snyder’s administration.  Tens of thousands of men, women, and children still don’t have drinking water in Flint,” said Cummings.  “We owe it to them to follow the facts wherever they may lead.”

Last week, Cummings and Lawrence sent a letter calling on Chaffetz to “immediately re-open the Committee’s investigation into the Flint water crisis, which you suddenly and prematurely closed last month without consulting us or other Members of the Committee.”  Chaffetz did not respond to this request.

A month earlier, on December 16, Cummings sent a letter to Chaffetz describing the many ways Governor Snyder has refused to provide the documents that Cummings and Chaffetz requested on February 26, 2016.  Chaffetz did not respond to that letter and instead closed the Committee’s investigation. 

Click here to watch Lawrence’s statement today.

Click here to watch Cummings’ statement today. 

115th Congress