FLINT, Mich. — Documentary filmmaker and Flint native Michael Moore joined hundreds of protesters outside Flint's city hall Saturday to express anger over Governor Rick Snyder’s and the state's handling of the city's ongoing water crisis.
“Once they were informed, they decided to keep letting the people of Flint drink poisoned water,” said Michael Moore. “In the back of their heads they knew these people had no power, no political power, no lobbyists, no money, nothing.”
Many protesters were happy to see the Hollywood star visit their city as Flint’s water troubles continue to make national headlines.
“It’s nice to see everyone come out and support each other in this ordeal that we’re going through,” said Flint native Cholyonda Brown.
Les Holdway drove all the way from Canada to hear Moore speak to the crowd of protesters.
“He’s been here supporting this city for a long time, I don’t think that he’s doing it for any other reason than his own heart,” said Holdway.
Not everyone was happy to see the filmmaker. Authur Woodson was chanting while Moore spoke to protesters.
“What I saw out there today were a bunch of Michael Moore fans, that’s what I saw today. We had over 200 people at the state capitol. We shut the capital down Thursday,” said Woodson.
Moore’s visit comes days after Governor Rick Snyder declared Flint’s water a state of emergency.
“The fact that they could have prevented this by spending $100 to put a safe chemical additive into the water that could prevented the corrosion of the lead would have saved the entire infrastructure. But the governor said no, ‘that’s too much money. We have to cut costs.'"
Moore, surrounded on Saturday by dozens of flag-waving and sign-toting Flint residents in front of the city's municipal complex, said he must "insist" that Obama visit on Wednesday, the same day the president is scheduled to tour the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The film maker going as far as creating a petition with more than 110,000 people signing it.
On Saturday President Obama signed an emergency declaration for Flint following a request from Snyder.
“Hopefully that 90 days is just a period of time to get an action plan together and do something real. It’s going to take a huge amount of federal money to help this in any way,” said Holdway.
Moore also asked the U.S. attorney general to arrest and prosecute Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, because he "knew that toxins, pollutants, and eventually lead was leaching into the water and being sent into the taps of people's homes."
Snyder said he appreciates the President's approval to provide federal assistance and pledges to use those additional resources to give the residents of Flint access to clean water.
Reverend Jesse Jackson is scheduled to visit Flint on Sunday to speak at a rally.