Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump made a previously unannounced trip to Flint, Michigan, on Wednesday where he took a very brief tour of a water treatment plant and was later chastised by a local pastor for bringing politics into her pulpit.
Trump made his first visit to the town to visit residents affected by the 2014 lead poisoning of their water supply, an issue he has failed to address in detail thus far.
"First of all, it would have never happened [under a Trump administration], because it was so ridiculous," Trump told NBC25-FOX66 news anchor Dave Bondy after touring the facility that has not been operational since last fall. "In order to save a small amount of money, they redo the whole thing, and now it's a disaster,” he said, referring to the state appointed emergency manager's decision to swap Detroit's water supply in favor of improperly treated Flint River water.
“I will say this — my administration, we'll get very much involved, and we're going to get the problem solved. But it’s still not solved, and it’s hard to believe, but it’s really harder to believe that they did it in the first place. Should have never happened.”
Trump's visit to the state, his second in the last 10 days, also included a pit stop to Bethel United Methodist Church where he lamented that previously "cars were made in Flint and you couldn't drink the water in Mexico. Now cars are made in Mexico and you can't drink the water in Flint."
According to WRAL, Trump was heckled by several members of the small crowd before being chided by Rev. Faith Green Timmons for turning his policy speech into a political attack on his opponent Hillary Clinton.
"Hillary failed on the economy. Just like she failed on foreign policy," he told the gathered crowd, a few of whom had heckled him. "Everything she touched didn't work out," he continued. "Nothing."
At that point, Rev. Timmons interjected: "Mr. Trump, I invited you here to thank us for what we've done in Flint, not give a political speech."
"Okay. That's good then I'm going back to Flint," Trump said.
Watch below, via CNN:
Flint pastor interrupts Trump: I didn't invite you to "give a political speech." https://t.co/VB1eN28c0U
— The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) September 14, 2016