Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) called the water contamination crisis in Flint “a disaster” similar to Hurricane Katrina in an interview with National Journal published Monday.
When asked if the comparisons to Katrina—largely considered the biggest domestic blunder of former President George W. Bush’s administration—were unfair, Snyder told the magazine: “No. It’s a disaster.”
The city’s high levels of lead in the water supply can be traced back to a 2014 decision to switch its water source in order to save money while under state bankruptcy management. Snyder said there were “multiple failures at multiple levels.” President Barack Obama declared a federal state of emergency in Flint on Saturday afternoon.
Snyder called the crisis “a negative” for his time in office.
“It’s clearly a negative on what we’ve accomplished since I’ve been governor,” Snyder told National Journal.
He also dodged the magazine’s questions about exactly when the state found out about the Flint water supply’s toxic lead levels. Read the full interview here.